October 23 2014 Latest news:
Kay Atwal, Chief Reporter
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
A landlord has been forced to pay more than £25,500 after Newham Council found children living in an overcrowded, unhygienic and dangerous property that he managed.
Belal Salik Choudhury was found guilty at Thames Magistrates Court of 24 disrepair offences under the Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation Regulations 2006 for which he was fined £20,500. He was also fined £5,000 for one offence under the Housing Act 2004. He must also pay £738 court costs and a victim surcharge of £120.
Following the introduction of Newham’s successful property licensing scheme in 2013, landlords must apply for a licence for every property they rent out in the borough. The council prosecuted Choudhury, from Ilford, after visiting the property on Birchdale Road, in Forest Gate, for which he had no licence. Housing officers discovered there were seven adults and two children living in the property, they were paying £2,300 in rent each month and communal parts of the property were in poor condition and poorly ventilated.
The carpets and walls were dirty and there was condensation and mould growth. The kitchen window was cracked with sharp edges in places and the bathroom window could not be closed.
There was black mould growth in the bathroom and the property lacked any smoke alarms.
Although Choudhury was asked to produce the latest fixed electrical installation test certificate and gas safety certificate, these have still not been received.
Mayor of Newham Sir Robin Wales said: “I accompanied the housing enforcement team when they first visited this property which was in a disgusting state. The tenants were subjected to overcrowded and dangerous conditions that put their health at risk. To subject children to these conditions is particularly sickening.”