A rogue landlord who rented out flats which were in breach of council planning laws and did not meet humane living standards has been ordered to pay almost £339,000 in fines.
Mr Nihal Seneviratne, of West Hampstead, and his company, NSV Management Ltd, were convicted for illegally turning a former hotel in Harlesden into 26 squalid studio flats six years ago.
Mr Seneviratne was given the huge fine after his case was brought to Harrow Crown Court by Brent Council on Tuesday. Harrow Crown Court issued a £300,650 confiscation order to Seneviratne’s company under the Proceeds of Crime Act. In addition, he was told to pay £20,000 in fines, alongside £18, 268 in costs.
During March 2012, the rogue landlord ignored a planning enforcement notice issued to him by Brent Council. Thereafter, he went on to con over 100 vulnerable tenants out of thousands of pounds.
The minimum size requirement for a studio flat in London is 37sqm. Mr Seneviratne charged rents for poorly insulated properties measuring between 9sqm and 20sqm.
There were also issues with the maintenance of the property, alongside the fact that tenants were living in insanitary conditions.
Rogue landlord fined heavily for allowing tenants to live in ‘atrocious conditions’
Councillor Harbi Farah, cabinet member for housing and welfare reform, said: ‘Mr Seneviratne’s illegal behaviour resulted in many tenants enduring atrocious conditions, which were making their lives a misery.’
‘The outcome of this long case is a victory against slum landlords who exploit vulnerable residents for a profit. Brent Council will make sure that rogue landlords will not benefit in any way from their crimes.’