The property had poor bathroom facilities and smoke alarms that didn’t work. Photographs: courtesy Hackney Council

Two rogue landlords who illegally let a Clapton property and subjected their tenants to “dangerous living conditions” have been fined more than £22,000 at Thames Magistrates Court.

Ella Louis Hill and Tyrone Bhahari Jnt were prosecuted by Hackney Council and charged with a failure to licence a House in Multiple Occupation along with several breaches of management regulations.

The court heard last week that the joint owners of the property on Durrington Road failed to maintain fire-safe doors – a risk exacerbated by the lack of working smoke alarms – and left the tenants with a faulty water supply and damaged washing facilities.

After investigating, council enforcement officers took swift legal action against the landlords to protect the tenants. The landlords failed to attend court and the case was found proven in their absence.

Cllr Sem Moema, Hackney’s mayoral adviser for private renting

Cllr Sem Moema, mayoral adviser for private renting, said: “The current lockdown measures have highlighted just how important a good, secure and safe place to live is – which is why it’s more important than ever that we’re taking action against landlords who take advantage of Hackney’s housing crisis and subject their tenants to illegal and dangerous living conditions.

“Nobody should have to live like this – let alone private tenants paying the rocketing rents that are now the norm in Hackney.

“With expanded licensing measures now guaranteeing better conditions for thousands of renters across Hackney, this sends a clear message that landlords who don’t get the licence they need will be identified and brought before the courts. I’m delighted that those responsible are getting the punishment they deserve.”

As part of its Better Renting campaign, the Town Hall’s property licensing measures require landlords to meet high standards or face a penalty notice of up to £30,000 per offence or an unlimited fine from the court.

Find out more at hackney.gov.uk/better-renting and hackney.gov.uk/property-licensing

Support us

The coronavirus outbreak meant that the Hackney Citizen was unable to print a monthly newspaper for three months.

We're grateful that we have since been able to resume printing. This would not have been possible without the generosity of our readers, whose donations kept the paper from disappearing completely at a distressing time for residents.

A huge thank you to everyone who gave their time and money to support us through the lockdown, and to those who continue to do so as we slowly recover from the dramatic fall in advertising revenues, on top of the existing challenges threatening the future of local journalism.

A one-off donation or a regular contribution from anyone who can afford it will help our small team keep the newspaper in print and the website running in the coming months and years.

Find out how you can donate.

Thank you for your support, and stay safe.

The Hackney Citizen team