As part of the Torbay Council’s continued campaign to tackle Rogue Landlords, a Torquay landlady has been ordered by Magistrates to pay nearly £6,000 in court fines and costs for failing to comply with a Prohibition Order.

The case which was heard at Torquay Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday 22 October 2014 was brought by Torbay Council’s Housing Standards and Legal Services Teams.

The order was served due to the dangerous conditions discovered within the property after an inspection by officers.

By allowing the premises to be used in her absence, Angela Claydon of Barton Road, Torquay, was prosecuted for two counts of failing to comply with a Prohibition Order. Miss Claydon was found guilty of both charges and subsequently fined £2,500 per offence with £800 costs and a £120 victim surcharge.

Cllr David Thomas, Leader of the Conservative Group and Executive Lead for Strategic Planning, Housing, Energy and Environmental Policy, said: “This is another successful case this year by the Housing Standards Team and Legal Services Team as part of our commitment to tackle Rogue Landlords.

“Every individual and family deserves to live in a safe home and our communities should not have to be blighted by problem properties. Our housing standards officers work closely with Devon and Cornwall police and the fire service to ensure that we take appropriate action. It really is a minority of landlords who are responsible for significant issues in our area.”

Despite the Prohibition Order having been in force for over three years and a previous conviction for similar offences in 2012, reports were received by council officers and Devon and Cornwall police advising that the property was still being used in contravention of the order. An early morning visit under warrant to the property by police and council officers was co-ordinated and the property was found to be occupied. A resulting inspection of the property identified that little had been done to improve housing conditions.

Acting Community Safety Sergeant, Jeff Coe from Devon and Cornwall Police, who works with the Council’s Community Safety Team, said: “All landlords have legal responsibilities to ensure that properties under their management are safe for use and are used appropriately by their tenants.

“Prohibition Orders are used by the council to keep properties empty until they are safe for use. When these orders are breached, a landlord is not only placing tenants and visitors at risk, but often the wider community. Devon and Cornwall police will continue to support the hard work of Torbay council officers to drive up the standard of housing in our area and to pursue those landlords who fail to comply with the law.”

Private tenants who are experiencing problems with their property, which a landlord is not resolving, and landlords who may need support and advice can contact the council’s housing standards team on 01803 208025 or visit www.torbay.gov.uk/housingstandards.

The team can also be found on Twitter @TorbayNHT.



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