mc_squared Posted April 20, 2010 Share Posted April 20, 2010 Ebay seller becomes first person in UK convicted for bidding on his own items By Daily Mail Reporter Last updated at 6:08 AM on 20th April 2010 Comments (0) Add to My Stories Conviction: A man faces a hefty fine for bidding on his own items on eBay to raise their price An eBay seller faces a fine of up to £50,000 after becoming the first person in the UK convicted of bidding on his own goods to raise prices. Paul Barrett increased the value of the items he was selling by bidding on them under a separate user name, in a practice known as 'shill bidding.' Barrett, 39, from Stanley, Co Durham, pleaded guilty to ten breaches under consumer protection laws but said he wasn't aware he was acting illegally. Barrett, who runs a minibus hire company, was investigated by North Yorkshire Trading Standards after a complaint that he advertised and sold a minibus that had its mileage reduced illegally. Officers found he was selling goods under the account of ‘shanconpaul’ and then bidding for them under his other identity, ‘paulthebusman’. 'eBay let me open up the second account and I gave all my personal details and home address to do so,' he told Skipton's magistrates' court. 'I realised the price was too low on some things and put the prices up using the second account.' His account has been suspended and he now faces a fine of up to £5,000 for each offence. He said yesterday: ‘I made a mistake in the advert. I put a bid on it to put the correct price I wanted. I didn’t realise I was doing anything wrong but now I do.’ The fair trading laws were brought in two years ago to bring Britain into line with the EU. A spokesman for eBay said 'shill bidding' was illegal. 'It is important for people to understand that there is not, nor has there ever been, room for illegal activity on the site.' Sentencing was adjourned. Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1267410/Ebay-seller-person-convicted-bidding-items.html#ixzz0ld1GcYhi Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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