A PARKING scammer who ripped-off holidaymakers has been ordered to cough-up thousands.

Asad Malik was previously jailed for 14 months for conning visitors to Gatwick Airport out of more than £1 million.

They looked for cheap airport parking and he lured them in using a picture of a hospital car park in Scotland.

But in fact he was dumping cars in a muddy field, costing his customers thousands in repairs.

Now, a Proceeds of Crime Act hearing at Lewes Crown Court heard how Malik had gained a £400,000 benefit from his dodgy parking scam which lasted for 20 months.

He had assets worth more than £180,000 to be seized to pay back victims, six of whom will get £5,000

Richard Heller, representing the Crown Prosecution Service, said financial investigators calculated his total earnings at £392,610.64.

The final settlement figure he must pay back or face returning to prison is £184,378.76.

The court heard Malik may have to sell his house in Jura Close, Crawley to pay back the money.

His Honour Judge Mark Van Der Zwart told the Pakistani former businessman he has three months to come up with the money.

“I accept it’s unlikely you will be able to meet that figure in the length of time,” the judge said. 

“You must understand that just because an order has been made, it remains possible if you come into funds, the prosecution can make a further application.”

Malik, 40, swindled holidaymakers and business travellers using faked customer reviews and photographs of a car park hundreds of miles away.

The Argus: Asad Malik was previously jailedAsad Malik was previously jailed
Instead of parking their vehicles in secure car parks, they were packed into fields, street corners and even outside a mosque.

A jury in Brighton found him guilty of three counts of defrauding or misleading customers, in breach of consumer protection laws.

At the time His Honour Judge Paul Tain told him: “All these offences involve primarily misleading actions.

“Many customers across the board have been misled. The vehicles were clearly being held in places which were obviously going to put them at risk.”

The judge said there was “at the very least, gross negligence” in Malik’s complaints procedure. 

He said: “It was almost as if it was a joke. One example was a customer reporting their clutch was burnt out. That exemplifies the approach being taken, customers that had difficulties were fobbed off in the hope they would go away.”

Websites customer testimonials were written in mangled English as if it had been translated using Google.

Richard Heller for the prosecution read one out in court.

“Mr John Smith left a review in December 2014 in which he described how his 'experience with them was the most suitable one, as I paid very less there which was the around trip of taxi fare and got the full service both ends of my journey’.”

Malik said the customer reviews were genuine although some were dummy ones used as examples by his web developers in Pakistan.

At the start of his defence, Mr Malik was asked why he claimed sites used by the airport long stay parking services belonged to his firms.

“Owned means we were the only ones using it,” he said.

“Like going on holiday in a hotel.

“Just because you are staying there doesn’t mean you are owning the hotel,” the businessman told the jury in Brighton.

The Pakistani businessman had worked for BT and as a taxi driver in Crawley after completing a masters in Satellite Communications and Space Studies at the University of Sussex in Brighton.

Originally from Karachi, Mr Malik said English was not his first language and he outsource the design of his site to a form in Pakistan.

Mr Malik said he had produced bank statements to show he had more than £200,000 to invest as part of his application for a UK visa.

He had originally planned to start a scrap metal business like his father in Pakistan.

He set up his first Gatwick valet parking firm in October 2014.

The companies traded for 20 months.