An unlicensed landscape contractor is suspected of ripping off at least six Sacramento-area victims, including an elderly Elk Grove couple. Sangato Mahei Telai of Stockton, California, is now behind bars. The victims say they paid anywhere from $5,000 to $8,000 for incomplete jobs, shoddy workmanship and projects that were not done as promised. They were also ordered around and told to provide lunch, beer and go to the bank to get cash for him.Telai used aliases names, including Sangato, Taliauli or ‘Sam’. He operated under the companies Windy Concrete and Landscaping and Quality Concrete, and kept addresses in Stockton and East Palo Alto, California. As an unlicensed landscape contractor, he was reportedly handing out business cards with another contractor's license number on it, which is a felony.
The arrest is a result of the California Contractors State License Board (CSLB) investigators looking into the elderly couple’s complaint. They also found that he was wanted on a no-bail bench warrant out of San Mateo County, where he faces additional charges for probation violations.
Telai is currently being held without bail and faces possible criminal charges. The CSLB plans to continue the investigation, as they believe there could be more victims. The Board investigates more than 20,000 complaints against contractors annually.