0370 270 6000

already registered?

Please sign in with your existing account details.

need to register?

Register to access exclusive content, sign up to receive our updates and personalise your experience on brownejacobson.com.

Privacy statement - Terms and conditions

online auction fixer faces £50k fine

14 May 2010

Paul Barrett, the first person convicted in the UK of making sham bids on eBay, could be fined £50,000 after pleading guilty to 10 charges under consumer protection laws.

Barrett, a 39 year old minibus driver from County Durham, had engaged in “shill bidding” – the online practice of using a different username to bid on your own auctions.

In pleading guilty Mr Barrett said that he had not realised that bidding on his own items was a criminal offence.

Mr Barrett is due to be sentenced at Bradford County Court on 21 May where he faces fines up to a maximum of £5,000 for each of the 10 offences.

This will no doubt act as a strong deterrent to other unscrupulous traders and should provide some consolation to those who have paid over the odds.

related opinions

More protection required for retailer workers as violence is on the rise, according to latest statistics

Following an MP debate on 5 November 2019, the government is due to release long-awaited guidance as to how it intends to protect workers in the retail industry against violence, harassment and abuse.

View blog

A year on: the Capped Costs Pilot Scheme

On 14 January 2019 a Capped Costs Pilot Scheme was introduced in the Leeds and Manchester Business and Property Courts, and has been set to run for two years.

View blog

Compulsory retirement age still hitting the headlines

Professor Ewart has succeeded in his age discrimination claim against Oxford University after reaching its compulsory retirement age of 68.

View blog

Increases to minimum wages in April 2020

The wage rises will be welcomed by the lowest paid workers but raising the minimum wage levels significantly more than the current rate of inflation will increase pressures on employers.

View blog

mailing list sign up



Select which mailings you would like to receive from us.

Sign up