The ex-boss of a Scots company fined half-a-million pounds for making 1.6million nuisance calls a day has been slammed for flaunting supercars in the midst of the scandal.
Duncan Paul, a former director of Clydebank-based CRDNN Limited, operated his business with a “complete disregard for the law” and made lives a misery by allowing staff to plague homeowners with relentless cold calls.
We told last week how the firm was facing enforcement action after failing to stump up the huge £500,000 fine issued after a probe by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).
Paul has now resigned from the firm so may not be liable to pay the fine.
But he is still living a life of luxury in a large, new-build mansion in the posh suburb of Bearsden near Glasgow – with a Mercedes in the driveway.
Sources have told the Record how Paul, 41, drove a string of luxury cars while running the nuisance call empire – including an Aston Martin, Range Rover and a white McLaren supercar.
One said: “He regularly drives flash cars.
“It’s fair to say he doesn’t mind flaunting his wealth despite making a fortune on the misery of others.”
Another added: “At one point he was driving a McLaren. This is an upgrade from an Aston Martin I believe.”
CRDNN was handed the maximum financial penalty after being found to have made 193million nuisance calls in just four months – sparking 3000 complaints.
A probe by the ICO revealed the calls, about window scrappage, debt management and window, conservatory and boiler sales, were made between June and October 2018.
It said some of the calls potentially put people’s safety at risk as they were made to Network Rail’s Banavie Control Centre and clogged up the line for drivers and pedestrians at unmanned level crossings, who were calling to check it was safe to cross the rails.
The calls were all made from so-called “spoofed” numbers, which meant that people who received the calls could not identify who was making them.
The company broke the law by not gaining consent from the phone owners to make those calls and by not providing a valid opt out.
Computer equipment and paperwork seized revealed the staggering scale of the operation and in March this year the ICO imposed the maximum £500,000 penalty, for a breach of the Electronic Communications Regulations.
Andy Curry, head of investigations at the ICO, said the company had “affected the lives of millions of people, causing them disruption, annoyance and distress” while the directors “knowingly operated their business with a complete disregard for the law”.
He said they did all they could to evade detection, from changing and not updating address details to transferring their operation abroad and attempting to go into liquidation.
The ICO confirmed this month that the fine was not paid. It has passed the matter to its Financial Recovery Unit and enforcement action has started against the directors.
Paul was appointed director of CRDNN in October 2016, just weeks after posting a photo of a black Aston Martin next to a top-of-the-range Range Rover in the driveway of his home.
The following year he posted a photo of a white McLaren Spider and when pals asked if he had “got it” he replied “yip”.
He resigned in December last year.
The Record attempted to contact Paul but he could not be reached.