Toronto, ON, June 28, 2016 – Viorel Bruda of Windsor, Ontario was sentenced to jail after repeated illegal building convictions. Bruda has a long history of illegal building activity in the Windsor area and several building code violation fines, which have not been paid.
Mr. Bruda was sentenced to two consecutive terms of 15 days in custody and 120 days probation. He will begin serving his sentence on Friday June 24, 2016 at the Elgin Middlesex Detention Centre.
Speaking after the June 15, 2016 decision, Tarion's Director of Enforcement Dave Roberts noted, "For over a decade, this man has been deceiving home buyers in the Windsor area, and building homes without a license. He owes money to the courts, to new home buyers, and to Tarion for unpaid warranty repair claims where Tarion has stepped in to fix the mess he created. We hope a jail term will raise awareness to new home buyers on the importance of working with registered builders. It also sends a strong message to builders and vendors that don't follow the rules – there are serious consequences."
In 2001, Bruda became a registered Tarion builder, but his license renewal was refused in 2004. Out of the 17 homes he built and registered with Tarion during this time, he received 14 chargeable conciliations from Tarion resulting in nearly $45,000 in claims Tarion had to pay out when he failed to honour the mandatory warranty. Bruda failed to pay back the claims or take care of the defects in these homes. Tarion stepped in to remedy the issues directly with the homeowners, and has since been pursuing Bruda's illegal building activities to protect future home buyers.
Bruda has been charged four times with illegal building. His convictions include:
- On October 20, 2015 Mr. Bruda was charged with being an unregistered builder and failing to enroll a new home. On June 15, 2016 Mr. Bruda pled guilty to the charges and received the two consecutive 15 day jail sentences.
- On February 15, 2015 Mr. Bruda and his company Armour Construction Ltd. were convicted of four offences under the Ontario New Home Warranties Plan Act. He was fined $12,500. A significant portion of these fines remain outstanding.
- On February 23, 2004 Mr. Bruda and his company 1403478 Ontario Inc. were convicted of one count each of failing to enrol a unit under Section 12 of the Ontario New Home Warranties Plan Act. He was fined $1,000 plus a victim fine surcharge.
- On August 11, 2003 Mr. Bruda and his company 1403478 Ontario Inc. were each convicted of one count of failing to enrol a unit under Section 12 of the Ontario New Home Warranties Plan Act. 1403478 Ontario Inc. was fined $500.00 plus victim fine surcharge and Mr. Bruda was given a suspended sentence.
Under the Ontario New Home Warranties Plan Act, home builders are required to register with Tarion and enrol every new home before construction. Tarion protects the rights of new home buyers by regulating new home builders and administering the province's new home warranty program. Part of Tarion's mandate is to find and prosecute illegal builders. Last year, the efforts of Tarion's enforcement team led to 105 convictions and $303,000 in fines, in addition to two jail sentences. In 2015, Tarion paid $2 million in claims on illegally-built homes.
Illegal building can be anonymously reported by calling Tarion at 1-800-786-6497, or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. New home buyers are also encouraged to visit the Ontario Builder Directory on Tarion's website to confirm that their builder is registered.
For more information, please contact:
Senior Manager, Corporate Communications at (416) 229-3863 or email@example.com