Despite all the court orders and injunctions, the years tied up in the Supreme Court and the warnings that he would be sent to jail, serial shonk Matthew Geoffrey Rixon just didn’t get it.
Rixon, 33, a convicted conman permanently banned from building in NSW after leaving a trail of unhappy victims, continued to undertake unlicensed building work, defying a Supreme Court order, until he was locked up.
On Friday, after being convicted of contempt of court for the second time, Rixon was jailed for a maximum of 18 months, with a non-parole period of 12 months.
Rixon was arrested and refused bail in the Gold Coast two weeks ago and extradited to NSW after he twice failed to appear in the NSW Supreme Court for sentencing for contempt of court.
For years, Rixon, who advertised himself as a builder, fencing contractor and handyman, was pursued by the Department of Fair Trading for accepting deposits and then doing either little or shoddy work without holding a builder’s license.
On April 17, 2013, the Commissioner of Fair Trading was granted an injunction to stop Rixon carrying out any residential building work. But within five months, Rixon, who has traded under a number of companies and used a host of aliases, had breached the orders and was guilty of contempt of court after he continued to undertake building work.
In May 2014, he was convicted of contempt of court and sentenced to an 18-month suspended jail term and ordered to complete 300 hours of community service. The court heard at the time that Rixon was bankrupt with debts totalling $400,000. On that occasion, Justice Peter Garling made it clear this was his last chance.
“Mr Rixon, let me make this perfectly plain,” Justice Garling said. “If you do not comply with the conditions ... you will automatically serve the balance of your term of imprisonment. Do you understand that?”
Rixon replied: “I do, Your Honour.”
But in early 2015, Rixon was paid $10,000 to complete building works at a property in southern Sydney.
The victim had hired Rixon after seeing an advertisement for “Affordable Home Services” in the handyman section of a newspaper.
The NSW Commissioner for Fair Trading had submitted that Rixon’s contempt involved “serious, wilful, conscious and deliberate conventions of the orders”.