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, 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.