In the strange happenstance way Mendocino County seems to attract the unexpected, yesterday, a Game of Thrones villain was ordered to pay restitution for faulty contracting work he did almost four years ago. In 2018, 59-year-old Dan Hildebrand (AKA Kraznys mo Nakloz, a rich slave-trader) was charged with a series of misdemeanors associated with unlicensed contracting work he conducted on two Willits homes.
Fans of HBO’s Game of Thrones will recognize Hildebrand for his role as Kraznys mo Nakloz who became wealthy from training and trading the Unsullied, a race of warrior-eunuchs that would later become loyal to Daenerys Targaryen, the Dragon Queen.
Yesterday, as per Mendocino County District Attorney’s announcement on Facebook, those charges resulted in the “longest criminal restitution hearing” in the county’s history in which Hildebrand was ordered to pay $74,961.79 for “faulty work he and his hand-picked associates attempted to undertake in 2018 for two Willits area homeowners.”
Back in August 2018, Hildebrand was found to be “without a required state contractor’s license, unlawfully advertising as a contractor without a required state contractor’s license, unlawfully charging an excessive down payment for contracting work, and unlawfully failing to carry workers compensation insurance.”
In January 2020, Hildebrand would admit to unlawful contracting without a state license and advertising without a license. The court granted Hildebrand a “pre-sentence diversion”, also known as a “deferred entry of judgment” for 24 months. This allowed Hildebrand to “forestall being sentenced for a set period of time.” During that time, Hildebrand would be required to agree on what the press release characterized as “summary probation with specific terms and conditions.”
Considering the nature of crimes Hildebrand admitted to, he was ordered to not do any contracting work until fully licensed, to obey all laws, and to pay restitution to the victims in Willits.
Since Hildebrand’s deferred entry of judgment began, he had not paid a penny of the restitution he had been ordered to pay the Willits residents which “necessitated what turned out to be an extended contested restitution hearing.”
Over a period of eight court dates starting on December 27, 2021 spread out until yesterday, multiple witnesses testified to “the myriad of problems experienced at the construction site and, ultimately, who was in charge and should be held responsible for making things financially right.”
Hildebrand has a long-acting career beginning in the late 1980s. Some of his notable appearances include HBO’s acclaimed show Deadwood, NBC’s mystery thriller Lost, and the motorcycle gang series Sons of Anarchy.
This thirteen-year-old video on YouTube appears to be a demo reel for Hildebrand. The YouTube channel hosting the video is entitled “thedanhildebrand” which could mean this demo reel was created by Hildebrand himself who uploaded it on the channel he created. If his contracting is anything like his video editing, the “shoddy” work characterization holds.
In light of Hildebrand’s “shoddy” work and questionable business practices, the press release from the District Attorney reminded Mendocino County residents to consider a number of “helpful tips” to follow when hiring a contractor:
- Only hire state-licensed contractors.
- Check the contractor’s license number at http://www.CheckTheLicenseFirst.com, http://www.cslb.ca.gov or by calling (800) 321-CSLB (2752).
- Get at least three bids, three references from each bidder, and review past work in person.
- Make sure all project expectations are in writing and detailed.
- Only sign the contract if you completely understand the terms.
- Confirm the contractor’s workers’ compensation insurance policy for employees, and ask about liability insurance to cover accidental property damage.
- Don’t pay in cash; and never pay more than 10 percent down or $1,000, whichever is less, unless the contractor has a blanket performance and payment bond on file with CSLB.
- Don’t let payments get ahead of the work.
- Keep a job file of photos and all papers relating to your project, including all payments.
- Don’t make the final payment until you are satisfied that the job meets all contract expectations.