El Paso County Attorney José R. Rodríguez announced today the sentencing of a local contractor accused of defrauding two El Paso residents.
38 year-old José Galván pled guilty this morning to 2 counts of Deceptive Business Practices at County Criminal Court #1. Judge Carlos Carrasco sentenced Galván to 300 days in jail.
According to one of the complaint affidavits, on September 2004 the defendant, doing business as "J & G Construction," received $37,000 to build an addition to a home in the Cielo Vista area. The victim complained that only one third of the work was completed.
The second complaint alleged that on January 2006 Galván, doing business as "Luxury Homes," received $126,000 to build a house in the Socorro area, but only completed half the work. The victim also claimed that a couple of months after she signed the contract, a local physician contacted her and told her that Galván had sold her house to him.
As of today, the local chapter of the Better Business Bureau does not have any complaints or negative information against José Galván or his two companies. The County Attorney's Office encourages consumers to always file complaints with the BBB when they believe that have been victimized, as these complaints provide a service to other potential customers in the community.
After the sentencing, County Attorney José R. Rodríguez warned consumers about the dangers of engaging in "advance fee" contracts.
"Consumers must be very cautious when it comes to giving builders money up front. Once the consumer has given money to the unscrupulous contractor, it is very difficult for us to get it back. This is why we recommend to the public to pay the complete amount of the contract only after the job is finished, and after corroborating the quality of the goods or services received," Rodríguez said.
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J & G Construction Press Release.pdf