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OFT revs up after investigation into Brisbane Motor Imports

18 November 2021

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has again taken a Slacks Creek man to court after he failed to supply vehicle engines to customers who had paid him for the items.

Jason Paul Murray who is the sole director of his company JP & KM Murray Pty Ltd (JPKM), trading as Brisbane Motor Imports, was fined $50,000. The company was fined a further $20,000 and ordered to pay $34,400 in compensation by the Beenleigh Magistrate Court.

Mr Murray pleaded guilty to all 8 charges laid by the OFT and a conviction was recorded against both parties.

The court heard that this trader had a history of similar offending. In April 2019, Mr Murray and JPKM pleaded guilty to 6 charges of accepting payments for vehicle engines but failing to provide them. On that occasion Mr Murray was fined $30,000 and his company was fined $10,000 and ordered to pay compensation of $61,000.

However, Mr Murray continued to accept payments and promise consumers parts he was unable to supply, causing more complaints to be received by the OFT.

As a result, in November 2019 the OFT issued a public warning for consumers to avoid doing business with JPKM and Mr Murray, and a new investigation commenced.

The court heard that between March 2019 and July 2020, Mr Murray had continued his misconduct by accepting payment from 8 consumers for vehicle engines. Mr Murray made up excuses as to why he was unable to provide the parts within a reasonable time and failed to refund consumers.

In sentencing, Magistrate Terry Duroux said that the court will not accept this behaviour as it had a significant impact on consumers’ lives, as they had suffered financial loss.

The magistrate imposed court orders with specific conditions to follow under the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) that JPKM must abide by for the next three years.

Commissioner for Fair Trading Victoria Thomson said it was not acceptable for a trader to ignore their obligations under the ACL as this company had done.

“This trader continued to engage in the same appalling conduct straight after he was prosecuted in 2019,” Ms Thomson said.

“This court outcome was warranted as Mr Murray made minimal efforts to change his business practices and behaviour.

“Traders must not accept payment from consumers if they can’t deliver the goods or services by the agreed date.

“The OFT does not tolerate this type of behaviour and will continue to protect the rights of Queensland consumers who are left out of pocket by dishonest traders.”

The OFT encourages consumers who have purchased goods or services from a business but have not received them to approach the trader for a refund in the first instance. If unsuccessful, they can lodge a complaint online or by calling 13 QGOV (13 74 68).