An Ontario pool and landscaping company is in hot water after several people allege they had been scammed out of thousands of dollars, and instead of enjoying a summer poolside, they have been left with mounds of dirt and disappointment.
“We have over half a million dollars in deposits, and if nothing happens, to me, this is the perfect crime,” said Daniel Pecarski.
For more than a year, Pecarski and 15 other Sommerland Pools and Landscapes customers have been trying to right a wrong, saying they paid more than $505 thousand to the company with nothing to show for it.
“We were duped, and unfortunately, you know, the first feeling you have is embarrassment. This should not have happened to me,” said Pecarski.
Sommerland Pool and Landscaping customers allege the company took their deposit and never completed the work in their backyards. (Supplied)
Kelly-May Vallee said the person they dealt with at the pool company, Matthew Tayler, left them high and dry, failing to deliver on the promise of a backyard oasis.
“In some cases, he ruined people’s backyards and just made a mess and left,” she said.
“He kept coming up with excuses,” added Dipesh Mistry, who had hopes of a backyard pool in 2022 that never happened.
Mistry claimed Tayler only offered them delay after delay.
“He kind of said he was in dispute with his partner and that he didn’t know when he could finish our jobs at that point. There was literally a bomb site of a backyard,” Mistry said.
Customers left feeling duped say Tayler stopped returning their calls, emails and Facebook messages.
Vallee said she “never heard from him again” after paying the deposit, adding she is out more than $40,000.
Dipesh said Tayler is listed as a director of the corporation, along with another man, Jamie Galipeau.
Matthew Tayler (L) and Jamie Galipeau (R), of Sommerland Pools and Landscapes are pictured.
Galipeau told CTV News he cut ties with Tayler when communication between them broke down and before any problems surfaced with customers.
Meanwhile, Tayler says he was simply the operations part of the business and points the finger at Galipeau, who was in charge of finances.
“I did not take money and run,” Tayler stated in a phone interview with CTV News. “I have zero allegations. I was responsible for operations. I did my part of the company till the funds went dry when Jamie had to step in.”
Regardless of who is to blame, the company’s customers say they want justice and their money back.
Provincial police confirm a criminal investigation is underway.
The allegations against Sommerland Pools and Landscaping, Tayler, and Galipeau have not been tested in court.