A landlord who was hit with a £66,000 fine over safety breaches at a rental property has fought back - and will now pay less than 10 per cent.
Mohammed Zamir was taken to court by Reading council late last year over security and fire safety issues.
But at a new hearing six charges against him were withdrawn; he has pleaded guilty to other remaining charges and his penalty has been slashed to £4,151 in fines and costs.
Zamir requested the case be reopened because he missed the original hearing due to Coronavirus and now the Reading Chronicle reports that Zamir blames his managing agent for the problems that led to the initial case.
He told the Chronicle: “[The judge] accepted my mitigating circumstances which made me ‘technically guilty’ due to the fact that I had inherited the issues due to poor management by my appointed managing agent for which I had no knowledge or control of the defects previously. The managing agent has now been sacked.”
Zamir pleaded guilty to other charges including failure to display a notice identifying the name, address and number of the manager of the property, failure to ensure common parts of the property were in a safe working condition and kept from obstruction, failure to ensure means of escape from fire were kept free from obstruction and in good order, and failure to ensure fire-fighting equipment were maintained in good working order.
A council statement says: “At a trial in December 2020, The Council prosecuted Mr Zamir and he was found guilty by the Courts in his absence. Mr Zamir subsequently successfully applied for the case to be reopened.
“An inspection was carried out on the 31st of March of the property in Short Street by a Senior Environmental Health Officer in the presence of Mohammed Zamir and his solicitor. The property was unoccupied and found to be broadly compliant.
“Mr Zamir subsequently pleaded guilty to 8 charges relating to failures to carry out his duties under the Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation (England) Regulations 2006.”
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