Farmers across west Wales are to receive a £160,000 windfall after they were swindled by a family firm that promised to make them money.

Clear Energy UK Ltd, based at Cross Hands, had offered to install solar panels which would generate so much electricity they would be able to sell the excess to the National Grid.

But the panels were never supplied and the money was used to keep other businesses afloat.

Anthony Mark Davies, aged 48, was said to be the driving force behind the company.

Swansea crown court heard he was a bankrupt at the time and persuaded his father John Davies, aged 69, to become the company director.

Anthony Davies' partner, Jodie Davies, aged 43, allowed him to use her bank account.

Lee Reynolds, prosecuting on behalf of Swansea city council's trading standards department, said after complaints had been received officers started an investigation.

Under the renewable energy industry's code of conduct deposits and advance payments should have been ring fenced and kept in a bank account separate from the business's.

Investigators who expected to find £235,000 in that account discovered it was £5.64 in the red.

Anthony and Jodie Davies, of Blacklion Road, Gorslas, Ammanford, admitted three trading standards offences. John Davies, of Y Bwthyn, Capel Hendre, near Ammanford, admitted aiding and abetting them.

Anthony Davies was jailed for 16 months, suspended for 18 months. Jodie Davies was jailed for 12 months, also suspended for 18 months, and John Davies received a four month sentence, suspended for 12 months.

The court heard that £160,000 would be repaid from a new business venture set up by Anthony and Jodie Davies.

Judge Peter Heywood ordered that £130,000 must be paid within 28 days and the outstanding £30,000 within 18 months.

He said he would have jailed the trio but that would mean the people they cheated would not receive compensation.