London landlord issued with ten year criminal behaviour order
One of Britain’s worst landlords has been issued with a ten year Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO) after an extensive investigation by Westminster City Council led to a landmark prosecution.
Katia Goremsandu was handed the CBO after breaching an Housing Improvement Notice – the latest offence to be committed by this Westminster property owner.
The court ruling is the first in London and only the second nationally, and follows a long-running investigation by Westminster City Council’s Residential Services, Community Safety and Legal Services teams, with the support of Haringey Council.
The CBO will last for a period of ten years and, if breached, could lead to a custodial sentence. In addition to the order, Ms Goremsandu was fined £3,500, along with a £120 victim surcharge, and was ordered to pay £7,645 costs.
In 2015, Ms Goremsandu topped the Ministry of Justice’s record of landlords prosecuted for providing poor quality or unlicensed homes (read here). She was prosecuted by Westminster City Council after failing to comply with an improvement notice to repair one of her properties, and was further prosecuted for obstructing the council with its investigation.
Westminster Cabinet Member for Public Protection and Licensing, Cllr Antonia Cox said:
“The Council is determined to protect its residents from rogue landlords who blight the lives of their tenants.
“The fact that this is the first Criminal Behaviour Order in London is testament to the hard work of Westminster City Council officers, who have worked tirelessly to build a successful case against Ms Goremsandu.
“The CBO means that the likelihood of Ms Goremsandu being able to reoffend is now significantly reduced. This outcome sends a clear message to all landlords that they have a responsibility to their tenants and bad practice will not be tolerated in Westminster.“
Under the terms of the CBO, Ms Goremsandu must not manage any private rented accommodation in the City of Westminster and the London Borough of Haringey, or own a company or hold office in any company which offers for rent or manages rented accommodation within those boroughs.
Ms Goresandu has been ordered to provide details and register all her properties in the City of Westminster and London Borough of Haringey and make each property available for inspection with 48 hours notice. She must also appoint a letting agent registered in one of the government approved redress schemes to manage all her properties and provide them with sufficient funds to ensure full compliance with housing regulations.
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