Private landlord in Newham is hit with record fine

A landlord has been hit with a record fine of £27,400 in the borough which is bringing in blanket landlord licensing of all 35,000 private rental properties in its patch from January 1.

Newnham Council in London brought the prosecution after tenants, including children, were said to have been discovered living in a slum.

Ashfaq Mohuiddin, 45, from Ilford, Essex, was found guilty of 17 charges at Thames Magistrates’ Court. Charges included failing to license and manage a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO).

The HMO consisted of four flats over a restaurant on High Street North, East Ham.

Housing inspectors found a number of occupiers and two children living in the unlicensed property, which was infested with mice and cockroaches and which had no fire detectors.

As well as the fine, Mohuiddin was ordered to pay Newham Council’s costs of £3,515 and a victim surcharge of £15.

Newham Mayor Sir Robin Wales said: “We want to ensure that private sector rented properties are well managed and meet a good standard. We also want to deal with the crime and anti-social behaviour that is sometimes associated with bad private sector rented housing.

“One bad house can drag down a whole street and we are doing this for the community.

“There are good landlords in Newham and we want to work with them. Unfortunately there are also some unscrupulous ones – and these are the ones we are targeting.

“We will never accept private sector tenants being directly exploited by landlords who force them to live in dangerous and unacceptable conditions.

“Good landlords have nothing to fear. For the bad ones, we have a clear message: clean up your act or pay the price.”