Bogus firm scammers swindle rebar suppliers

Aaron Morby 2 years ago
Share

Scammers are targeting rebar suppliers to order deliveries in the name of bogus or cloned firms that vanish without paying.

Around 250 tonnes of mesh is known to have been stolen
Around 250 tonnes of mesh is known to have been stolen

The sudden outbreak of orders from bogus and cloned firms has caused the industry trade body to raise the alarm about the swindle.

More than £112,000 of mesh has been reported to have gone missing in the last week alone.

But the British Association of Reinforcement believes the full extent of the scam has not fully come to light and could run into millions of pounds.

Steve Elliott, BAR chairman, said: “These are sophisticated scams and reinforcement suppliers are strongly advised to carry out stringent checks right down to the telephone number.

“Be cautious if the delivery address is an isolated warehouse with no construction going on or if the priced agreed is higher than the real worth.”

The use of clone companies to defraud manufacturers and suppliers has been seen in isolated cases for years, particularly in the plant and equipment side.

But now the fraudsters are switching to the rebar industry as the price of mesh hits £450 a tonne.

The latest attacks also suggest that fraudsters are now more sophisticated and systematic.

One supplier said he believed his supplies had been sold on as imported Italian mesh with forged certificates.

BAR has warned suppliers to tighten up on vetting and due diligence procedures. Credit insurers have said they will not cover any loss if they believe that sufficient background checks have not been made.

Some bogus companies have slipped through supplier checks in the latest spate of attacks.

Around 250 tonnes of mesh is known to have been stolen with one fabricator hit for 100 tonnes.

But the problem is feared to be a lot bigger as scammers move to use ‘clone’ genuine companies to place orders.

Here a reputable company is cloned. All will be correct apart from the telephone numbers and email addresses.

The clone company takes delivery of reinforcement mesh and then sells the mesh on.

Elliott said: “This make it essential that the reinforcement sector continues to share information to beat the scammers.”

 

Latest news

Beck Interiors files administration notice

Supply chain has suffered delayed payments from £139m-turnover luxury fit out specialist
7 hours ago

Green light for York Central civil service office hub

£60m office project accelerates York Central goods yard redevelopment
4 hours ago

Blenheim House Construction enters administration

Administrators looking at options on present projects
20 hours ago

Profits rise at Esh Group with more to come

Contractor confident about year ahead as market conditions move in right direction
7 hours ago

Piling specialist Van Elle sees housing orders rise 30%

Mark Cutler says firm on course to deliver 10% annual sales growth
7 hours ago

HS2 to spend £100m shutting sites where work never started

Remediation of sites no longer needed for cancelled Phase 2 will take three years
24 hours ago

Willmott Dixon wins £61m deal for new Army dog unit

Contractor to revamp Kendrew Barracks in Rutland
7 hours ago

Stockport advances 4,000-home Town Centre East plan

Council seeks consultants to steer plan for 280-acre area in the city
8 hours ago

ISG sale imminent as buyers set-up UK holding company

South African nutrition entrepreneur and Australian partner primed to take over
1 day ago

CR Construction wins £210m Manchester towers

Construction to start next year on four blocks ranging from nine to 34-storeys
1 day ago

Southern Housing to rationalise supply chain following merger

Firms put on alert for £1.7bn construction framework renewal
1 day ago

Decision delayed on 52-storey Isle of Dogs tower

Hong Kong developer plans 460 flats block next to Millwall Inner Dock
1 day ago

Go-ahead for £850m North London estate rebuild

Flagship Edmonton housing estate redevelopment will deliver 2,000 new homes
1 day ago

Mace lands £184m Oxford Science Park contract

Contractor to build trio of laboratory and office buildings
2 days ago

Worker paralysed in 30ft fall during electricity pylon demolition

Specialist firm fined £240,000 after court hears linesman attached lanyard to a loosened steel section
1 day ago

Sir Robert McAlpine clinches £4bn Somerset gigafactory

2.6m sq ft car battery plant will require over 2,000 workers at peak construction
2 days ago

House builder Hill Group tops £1bn turnover

Group's controlled development pipeline stands at £10bn
2 days ago

Higgins wins 360 new homes job in south London

Firm will now work up planning for phase 2 of Brixton housing project
2 days ago

Kier starts £48m Ealing high school job

Northolt High School to be rebuilt for 1,130 pupils
2 days ago

Plans in for £64m Suffolk A12 upgrade

Work to start next summer on dualling and junction upgrades
2 days ago

Man suffers multiple fractures in HS2 accident

Engineering firm fined after fall leaves worker in hospital for two months
2 days ago

Go-ahead for Milton Keynes’ largest private rental project

Platform_ to build 20-storey scheme of 335 flat next to train station
5 days ago

A2Dominion reins in new-build and cuts development team

Housing association to stop private new build sales in big strategy switch
5 days ago

Sellafield partnership appoints final key delivery partners

Altrad and Kaefer bag £180m access, insulation and painting deal
5 days ago

Health centre canned as build costs double in four years

Devon NHS stands down plans for Health and Wellbeing Centre in Teignmouth
5 days ago

Family confirm death of Des O’Rourke

Deputy chair and co-founder of Laing O'Rourke dies aged 75
6 days ago

Plans approved for major phase of £2.5bn Salford Crescent

Crescent Innovation will help create global research hub
5 days ago

Deal to kick-start 3,000-home Northstowe town centre

Labour Government acts to unlock next phase of new town near Cambridge
6 days ago

Striking new-look for Canary Wharf HSBC tower

Large chunks of upper floorplate to be removed in major overhaul
6 days ago

Kier halves debt to £115m after strong trading year

Order book up 7% to £10.8bn with 85% of work secured for year ahead
6 days ago

Contractor services