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ASBO landlord who assaulted tenant fined for safety breaches

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ASBO landlord who assaulted tenant fined for safety breaches

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Published by Max Salsbury for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Legal, Local Government

ASBO landlord who assaulted tenant fined for safety breaches ASBO landlord who assaulted tenant fined for safety breaches

A London landlord - believed to be the first in the country to receive an ASBO - has been fined for putting her tenants' lives at risk.

Catherine Boyle of 14 Iverson Road, Camden was fined £8,074.60 after failing to comply with fire regulations for a house in multiple occupation (HMO)

Ms Boyle was given a two-year ASBO in January 2011 which forbade her from causing harassment, alarm or distress to her tenants, entering their rooms without consent, or cutting off their gas and electricity supply.

The 59-year-old was also cautioned in August 2010 for common assault against one of her tenants.

In a prosecution brought by Camden Council, Ms Boyle was found guilty of failing to carry out works specified in an Improvement Notice and four breaches of fire-related HMO regulations. She was also found to be in breach of her HMO licence by providing her tenants with non-fire retardant furniture.

The Improvement Notice served in 14 April 2011 required Ms Boyle to carry out extensive works to deal with serious hazards in relation to excess cold, entry by intruders, damp, fire food safety, and falls. She was required to have completed the alterations by November 2011, but a council inspection in January 2012 revealed that work had not been completed.

Highbury Magistrates were concerned about the serious offences which put tenants at risk, fining Ms Boyle £3,600, a victim support contribution of £15 and the council’s costs of £4459.60. She was required to pay the amount within four months and was reminded that the works were still outstanding putting her at risk of a further prosecution.

Camden’s cabinet member for housing, Councillor Julian Fulbrook, said: “Living in a cold damp home has a negative impact on people’s health including increased risk of hypothermia, respiratory illness, heart attack and strokes, underweight infants, social isolation and financial stress. In 2010/11 it was estimated excess winter deaths nationally were 25,700.

“We inspect all our HMOs regularly to make sure they comply with all health and safety regulations so that tenants are safe in their homes. In the most serious cases we have the power to revoke an HMO licence and take over the running of the properties ourselves.”

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