29 October 2014

A landlord was successfully prosecuted this week for renting out an unsafe property in Cambridge, the second successful prosecution by Cambridge City Council within the last two weeks.

Maggior Coppola, described as ‘unscrupulous’, had repeatedly refused to repair a property at risk of fire damage 

He was ordered to pay a £10,000 fine after admitting that he had failed to comply with an improvement notice and pleading guilty to four offences under the 2004 Housing Act, as well as a further offence under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976. He was also ordered to pay full costs of £2,500.

Cambridge City Council’s environmental health officers carried out inspections of the house, which was used for multiple occupancy, and found it was unsafe due to the risk of fire and smoke spreading throughout the property.

Although Coppola was given time to undertake the required maintenance and upgrades, he did not, and was served with an improvement notice requiring him to complete the works by October 2013.

When he failed to comply and persisted in renting out the unsafe property a prosecution was commenced.

Cllr Kevin Price, executive councillor for housing at Cambridge City Council, said: “We want to see all families living in safe and decent accommodation. While the majority of landlords are responsible, there is no place in Cambridge for rogue and unscrupulous landlords.

Two weeks ago, landlord Khalid Malik pleaded guilty to 46 charges relating to four properties in Cambridge, and was fined £30,000.

Commercial buildings, non-domestic and multi-occupancy premises in England and Wales are already forced to undertake a 'suitable and sufficient' fire risk assessment carried out under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.

While the overwhelming majority of premises do this, if the assessment is thought to have been carried out to an insufficient extent, the Responsible Person can face an unlimited fine or up to two years in prison.

Original source

Cambridge News