John Gaines, 72, of Leamington Spa, was found guilty of 22 charges of fraud at Warwick Crown Court this week.
Gaines employed Security Industry Authority (SIA) licensed guards at a number of construction sites belonging to Heathrow Airport and Tesco.
In many cases he either failed to pay them in full, or didn’t pay them at all.
Gaines was also found guilty of claiming to be “SIA approved”, despite not being a member of the SIA Approved Contractor Scheme.
Sentencing has been deferred to 14 November pending the production of a pre sentencing report. Gaines has been remanded into custody in the meantime.
Nathan Salmon, of the SIA’s Criminal investigation team, said: “I am grateful to the jury for returning guilty verdicts on all 22 counts in this case.
“In part, private security regulation was introduced to address “cowboy” operators, and I can think of no better word to describe Gaines’ actions.
“Through various aliases and phantom businesses, Gaines set out to employ security operatives, withholding their pay whilst profiting from his contracts.
“He employed new staff to replace those who left, continuing his fraudulent behaviour many times over.
“He sought to conceal his identity, hid behind wild excuses, and was threatening to some employees who were merely seeking payment for the work they did for him.
“The SIA recognised the harm Gaines was causing to regulated individuals within our industry, and I am grateful to the 21 employee victims who bravely came forward to secure this conviction.”
Gaines told the court that the workers whom he failed to pay were either “asleep on the job” or had failed to provide proper documentation.
But the court heard from a variety of witnesses who claimed that he refused to supply written contacts, ignored requests for payment, and left threatening phone messages for those who he defrauded.