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Rogue landlord handed £66k fine for operating unlicensed HMOs in Luton

Luton Council has successfully prosecuted an unscrupulous landlord for letting three unlicensed houses in which several people lived in squalor.

Zenith Accommodation Ltd and its director Mohammad Mallick, of Ivy Road, Luton, faced charges last week at Luton Magistrates Court of managing Houses in Multiple Occupation at 36 Dorel Close, 79 Cromwell and 3 Cromwell Road, which were not licensed and breaching safety regulations.

Both Zenith Accommodation Ltd and its director were found guilty on all offences, with the company fined a total of £66,741, while Mallick was personally fined £14,661.

As well as operating without a licence, the properties provided dangerous conditions for residents, with a lack of fire doors, lack of fire detection, lack of emergency lighting, damp and insufficient electrical sockets among the many defects identified.

Cllr Tom Shaw, Luton Council’s portfolio holder for housing, commented: “Being a landlord carries with it significant legal responsibilities and this successful action is yet another achievement of our Rogue Landlord Project. This case underlines the council’s ongoing commitment to ensure private tenants in our town have safe, high-quality accommodation.

“In situations like this, dishonest and immoral landlords are not only taking financial advantage of vulnerable tenants, but placing their lives in danger. We will not hesitate to prosecute landlords who show a disregard for the law and their responsibilities towards occupants.”

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