Bunkbeds crammed into bedrooms.

Bunkbeds crammed into bedrooms. Photograph: Hackney Council

A landlord who squeezed 28 tenants into a two-storey terraced house with just one kitchen and bathroom has been slapped with a £20,000 fine.

In a dawn raid on the seven-room house in Stoke Newington last October, officers found people sleeping five to a room in tiny metal bunk beds and on mattresses on the floor in the eaves of the illegally converted attic.

The attic

People were discovered sleeping in the eaves of the attic. Photograph: Hackney Council

The Allerton Road house’s landlord, Alfred Landau, of Queen Elizabeth’s Walk in Stoke Newington, failed to install any fire alarms or carbon monoxide monitors and ignored basic safety standards.

After pleading guilty to managing an unlicensed house of multiple occupation at Thames Magistrates Court last month, he was given the maximum fine and made to pay costs and charges of £1,845.

Cllr Philip Glanville, the borough’s housing chief and acting mayor, said: “The lack of any basic fire safety at this jam-packed property put lives at risk, and this maximum fine serves as a warning that we won’t stand by when we see unsafe conditions in Hackney’s homes.

He added: “We’re determined to drive up standards for private renters in Hackney, and we won’t hesitate to take enforcement action and press for the strongest penalties for landlords who flout the rules.

“Those who seek to take advantage of London’s housing crisis for personal profit have no place in our borough.”

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