Family ‘Exploited Holidaymakers’ with ‘Meet & Greet’ Car Park

A family ran an unscrupulous ‘meet and greet’ car park at Manchester Airport, telling holidaymakers it was safe and secure.

Family 'Exploited Holidaymakers' with 'Meet & Greet' Car Park f

"Car keys and the cars themselves were kept insecure"

A family were taken to court for running an unscrupulous “meet and greet” car park in a muddy field near Manchester Airport.

They charged up to £70 to collect cars between August 2017 and February 2018 and park them securely.

However, up to 500 cars were left in the field or on nearby streets.

Customers returned from their holidays to discover their cars had been damaged.

One man returned to find an extra 688 miles on his car while another discovered cannabis in his vehicle.

In one case, a holidaymaker found their car had been in a collision with a bus.

One woman used a mobile app while abroad to track her car as it was being driven around Manchester. Meanwhile, the business insisted it was in a compound.

The car park’s adverts were posted on their own website and on price comparison sites and claimed cars would be in a secure car park, covered with CCTV, floodlights and 24-hour staffing.

Prosecutor Adam Pearson said: “Those advertisements did not accord with the reality of the situation.

“The reality was that cars were parked in a muddy field, or on residential streets.

“They were not covered by CCTV or security cameras, there was no floodlighting nor 24-hour staff coverage.

“Car keys and the cars themselves were kept insecure, resulting in thefts of keys and cars.

“Other cars suffered significant damage, or were used by employees of the company for their own or the company’s purposes without the permission of the owners.”

The firm operated out of the Isaq family’s home at Davenport Green Hall, Hale Barns, but used local fields and residential streets to store customer’s cars.

The parking business first operated under the name Eat, Meet and Greet Ltd, with Sultan Khan as the sole director, before the company was dissolved in March 2017.

However, the business continued to operate through a second company called Manchester Meet and Greet Limited.

Sultan Khan was the sole director while his father Mohammed Isaq was “closely involved” in running the firm.

A third company, Manchester Airport Parking Services Limited, was later set up, with Amani Khan as the new firm’s sole director.

Each company operated the same way.

In August 2017, there was a break-in at the firm’s office, which was in the back of a broken-down van. The burglary resulted in up to 130 keys and a number of cars stolen.

Mr Pearson added: “Customers were paying for a service they did not receive and would never have agreed to if they knew the truth.”

Manchester Crown Court heard the combined turnover was up to £200,000 but the extent of the fraudulent trading was between £30,000 and £100,000.

Mohammed Isaq has previous convictions for breaching fire regulations, as well as for VAT fraud. Neither Sultan nor Amani Khan had convictions on their record.

Mitigating for Isaq, Abdul Iqbal KC said many customers were satisfied with the service as he claimed Isaq had not set out to scam motorists.

But after the burglary, the company had to “scramble” in order to find alternative car parks, and admitted the service was not what was advertised.

Both Sultan and Amani Khan were described as being young when they were made sole directors of the business.

Sentencing, Judge John Potter said:

“These proceedings reflect a period of time in which the three of you took part in the exploitation of customers by the adoption of unscrupulous business practices.

“On the evidence in this case, I find you, Mohammed Isaq, to be the main instigator behind this and the leading light in the business activities.”

He said the business showed a “disgraceful failing to take any responsibility to the customers seriously” and said the family showed “incompetence”, a “lack of planning” and “wilful neglect”.

Judge Potter told Isaq: “You have lived for a significant period of your life with very little regard for regulatory matters.”

Sixty-two-year-old Isaq was jailed for 17 months and banned from becoming a company director for six years.

Isaq’s children Sultan and Amani each received an 18-month community order.

Sultan was also ordered to complete 20 days of rehabilitation activity requirements and 200 hours of unpaid work.

Amani was ordered to complete 10 days of rehabilitation activity requirements and 200 hours of unpaid work.

Nina Khan, wife of Mohammed Isaq, was discharged after the judge formally recorded not guilty verdicts.

A spokesperson for Trafford Council said:

“This is an appalling case in which customers were lied to and taken advantage of.”

“They left their cars with this company on the understanding they would be kept in a safe location while they were away and this was simply not the case – their vehicles were misused and damaged.

“We are pleased with the outcome of this case and would like to say a huge thank you to our trading standards and planning teams for all their hard work in the investigation.

“We will not stand by and allow fraudulent companies to operate in our borough – we will investigate and have them prosecuted.’

A Proceeds of Crime Hearing is yet to take place to recover prosecution costs and compensation for motorists affected.

Dhiren is a journalism graduate with a passion for gaming, watching films and sports. He also enjoys cooking from time to time. His motto is to “Live life one day at a time.”

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