Rugby landlord fined £1,500 for failing to comply with improvement notices

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A landlord has been fined £1,500 after failing to carry out repairs at a rented house in Rugby.

At Nuneaton Magistrates Court on Monday, Mokhtar Mohammad Pouri, who owns the house in multiple occupation (HMO) in Newbold Road, was successfully prosecuted for the third time by Rugby Borough Council for failing to comply with improvement notices.

Notices were first served on the property in November 2008 after council officers found a number of breaches of housing legislation with regards to fire safety. The property was also suffering from severe damp.

Further notices were served in 2010 and Pouri, of Cleve Avenue, Nottingham, was prosecuted in May 2011 for failing to comply with the notices. He was prosecuted again in May 2012.

But despite work being carried out at the property, a further inspection by council officers in November found a number of fire safety issues and problems with damp.

At Monday’s trial, Pouri pleaded not guilty to four offences of failing to comply with improvement notices.

But he was found guilty by magistrates, who fined Pouri £1,500 and ordered him to pay the council’s £2,046 costs.

Speaking after the case, Cllr Leigh Hunt, Rugby Borough Council portfolio holder for sustainable and inclusive communities, said the council had a duty to ensure tenants lived in safe and secure accommodation.

“In the majority of cases the council works with landlords to make sure properties comply with housing regulations,” Cllr Hunt said.

“But when landlords ignore improvement notices, and jeopardise the welfare of tenants, the council has no hesitation in taking the matter to court.

“The fine in this case shows how seriously the courts take breaches of improvement notices, and I hope it serves as a reminder to landlords of their responsibilities.

“We encourage landlords to approach us to help them ensure properties meet essential requirements.”

Landlords, or tenants who believe properties may be unsafe, can contact the council’s public health and licensing team on (01788) 533882.