THE BOSS of a Gatwick Airport valet parking firm that dumped vehicles in nearby fields has been handed a 14-month prison sentence.
Asad Malik was found guilty of deceiving clients by lying to them about where his London Gatwick Parking company was storing their cars.
Instead of the “secure compound” that was advertised on the firm’s website, Malik’s firm instead dropped the vehicles in fields near Crawley,West Sussex, roughly five miles away from Gatwick Airport.
Malik’s company was also found to have been extremely poor custodians of its clients’ cars. Trading Standards officers noted in an investigation that some cars were sporting damage and parking tickets, and others were unlocked with their keys on the windscreen.
The investigation was prompted by a tip-off in July 2016 that more than 1,000 cars were being parked in a field on Bonnetts Lane.
Richard Sargeant, West Sussex Tradings Standards’ team manager, said: “Malik and his company deceived thousands of customers between 2014 and 2016, causing damage to their cars and making false claims on its website.
“This was a complex investigation for our team and I am very pleased with the outcome.”
Trading Standards urges motorists who prefer to use ‘meet and greet’ parking services at Gatwick Airport should only use a company that has been vetted and approved.