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Tony Nowaosad, who claims to trade under the name of ‘Tudor Antiques’ in Bruges, is thought to be still touring auction rooms buying.

Durrants, of Beccles in Suffolk, who have sent copies of the cheque he bounced with them, told ATG that in spite of many requests, he continues to refuse to pay his outstanding bill.

Because he is based on the continent, they say, he cannot be sued through the British legal system, nor can they retrieve the goods he has taken.

He bought furniture to the value of £3471.30 at their April 17 sale and paid with a cheque drawn on a Belgian bank account. This was returned with notification that there were no funds in this account.

Having failed to gain satisfaction after speaking to Mr Nowaosad on three occasions, Durrants are now putting this matter in the hands of a debt collection agency.