June 15, 2024

Unlicensed contractor, Shane Lac, from Cape Coral, Florida, has recently been apprehended for grand theft. This is a result of deceiving numerous clients and subcontractors on home remodeling projects.


Allegedly, Lac swindled customers and other subcontractors by requesting upfront deposits for home remodels without carrying out the agreed work. This alarming incident stresses the significance of checking contractor licenses and references before any engagement.

An Overview of the Fraud

Lac portrayed himself as a remodeling contractor in Cape Coral, securing significant deposits from clients with assurances of achieving different home restoration projects.

Many victims informed that up to 50% payment was made in advance, but Lac vanished without finalizing the tasks. He is also blamed for not paying subcontractors for their services, thereby causing a financial setback of thousands of dollars.

Accounts from Victims

Christian Christie, proprietor of Advantage Electric in North Fort Myers, is among the subcontractors cheated by Lac. Christie confirmed that Lac had commissioned him for several assignments but failed to remit the due amount of $6,600.

Reported excuses used by Lac to avoid payment were having cancer or a colleague who swindled his funds, after which he ended up being unreachable.

Arrest & Charges

Shane Lac is now in custody and indicted with grand theft. His arrest has brought some respite to his victims, but the lingering financial losses remain a significant concern for the victims, including homeowners and subcontractors.

Implications on the Community

Matt Sinclair, president of the Cape Coral Construction Association and part of the city’s construction licensing board, highlighted the widespread issue of unlicensed contractors in Florida.

Sinclair advises residents to exercise vigilance and execute careful checks before recruiting contractors, warning that a certified logo and physical office space do not guarantee credibility.

Prevention Advice

To avoid becoming prey to deceitful contractor practices, the following strategies are suggested:

– Verify Licenses: Ensure a contractor’s business license is valid and current.
– Request References: Seek feedback and reviews from previous customers.
– Limit Deposits: Try not to pay more than 10% of the total project cost as an upfront deposit.
– Research Thoroughly: Inspect the contractor’s online presence and study other customer reviews.

Verification Resources

Numerous resources exist to aid in the verification of contractor licenses and credentials, such as the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation. Local construction associations and licensing boards can also offer guidance and support.


As legal procedures against Shane Lac ensue, his victims harbor hopes for justice and the recovery of their financial losses. His arrest serves as a harsh admonition of the hazards posed by unlicensed contractors. Homeowners can safeguard themselves against similar fraudulent activities by proactively verifying credentials and seeking references.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q1: What are some red flags to look out for when hiring a contractor?

A1: Some red flags include unusually low bids, pressure to make a quick decision, shoddy references, lack of insurance, and contractor demanding full payment upfront

Q2: How can one verify a contractor’s license?

A2: This can be done through the local certification boards or websites like The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation that provide the tools to check a contractor’s licensing status.

Q3: What steps should I take if I become a victim to a contractor scam?

A3: Reach out to local authorities and report the incident immediately. It’s also good to notify the local licensing board and the Better Business Bureau. If possible, take legal action and hire a lawyer who specializes in contractor fraud.