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Victims of possible paving scams asked to come forward

By Howard B. Owens

It can be hard to admit you might have been scammed, but if you think you've been caught up in a paving scam, Investigator Leo Hunter of the New York State Police needs to hear from you.

A family of Gypsies by the last name of Stanley, who have a record of arrests and lawsuits in other jurisdictions, may be operating in the area.

As The Batavian reported yesterday, one Corfu couple complained to the State Police this week about an apparent scam. A man identified as J. Stanley told a couple that he had extra asphalt left over from another job, and that he could pave their driveway for $3,000. But the couple wound up paying $7,500 once the job was completed.

From California to New Hampshire, the Stanleys are accused of tricking residents into paying high prices for shoddy paving jobs.

But proving an actual crime was committed locally could be difficult unless other alleged victims can be found.

The group of workers is described as driving shiny and spotlessly clean bright red trucks.

Hunter said the Stanley's normal mode of operating is to pull up to a house in like-new trucks and talk a good game about an inexpensive paving job. Then when the job is about half way through, start arguing among themselves -- to create an environment of confusion -- with the boss saying it's more work than expected and more asphalt is needed. They threaten to leave, with an incomplete paving job, unless the homeowner agrees to pay more.

According to Hunter, the Office of Homeland Security provided information on the Stanleys. They are believed to operate under a number of business names, including Century Paving and Driveways, Road One Paving, Patriot Paving, Verizon Paving and Premier Paving.

There are pending lawsuits involving the Stanleys in Vermont and Washington, Hunter said.

"They're bilking people out of money to the tune of millions," Hunter said.

One problem that makes them difficult to prosecute, Hunter said, is that just enough of the job is done to make the issue more of a civil matter than a criminal matter.

To contact Investigator Hunter call 344-6200, ext. 6212. If Hunter isn't available, ask for a supervisor.

Previously: Traveling pavement crews may be running asphalt scam in region

Google: "Stanley Paving Scams."

tim raines

It seems the "Irish Travelers" have finally brought one of their many scams to WNY. The next group will probably do the roofing scam. Sometimes they will also sneek into your home and steal money when you're distracted.

They pray on the elderly, the uninformed, and most of all, they prey on our desire for a "deal"

The "Irish Travelers" have been running scams for years and will continue to be unprosecuted. Lawsuits, judgements, ha-ha. They show us that out court system is just what it's labeled...criminal justice.

Crime pays for the tune of millions.

Something is wrong with that............

Sep 17, 2010, 10:06am Permalink
Mark Potwora

It seems crazy that someone would pay an out of state company they never heard of pave their driveway.Some of the blame should be laid on these so called victims.The buyer has to take some of the blame..Nobody goes door to door selling blacktop driveways..I thought you get wiser as you get older..

Sep 17, 2010, 2:24pm Permalink
Howard B. Owens

The people who run these scams have been doing it for years, if not generations. They're highly skilled. Very slick selling the con.

Sep 17, 2010, 3:07pm Permalink
Billie Owens

I dislike diving into "politically correct" discussions, but the term "Gypsies," the common, and only recently discouraged term for the Romany people -- has nothing to do with "Irish Travelers." In fact, I've never heard of "Irish travelers," unless you mean to lump in history's transient disadvantged, which would include Jews, Irish, Roma and others.

Public TV has aired a great series on the Roma people, and yes, based on what I gleaned from the series, they are Romany, not Irish or African or Mexican or other. And they are Gypsies.

Sep 17, 2010, 9:08pm Permalink
tim raines

Mrs Owens, There isn't any political correcting to discuss. Irish Travelers have little to do with ethnicity and everything to do with scams.

If you want to mention TV shows, NBC Dateline has done a lot of shows about them.

That's their name and scammin is their game.

Possibly 40,000 living in the USA.

Some states have their own Irish Traveler Crime Task Force.

In fact, if you would of "played reporter" for a moment and researched Irish Traveler scams, you wouldn't have posted your reply.

Gypsies, Irish Travelers, whoever. They have brought their scams to WNY, and if successful, they will be there for a while.

Watch out.

Sep 18, 2010, 8:50am Permalink
Gabor Deutsch

I am not a big fan of CHER so this will do.
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Sep 18, 2010, 9:56am Permalink
Billie Owens

In my ignorance, I jumped to the conclusion that the term Irish Travelers referred to an ethnic group. This is a reference, I've learned from you, to a big group of scammers preying on people all over the nation. Thank for the enlightenment.

Sep 18, 2010, 11:16am Permalink

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