A landlord has been prosecuted and ordered to pay a £12,000 fine as well as over £12,000 in court costs, after being found guilty of not licensing three flats he was letting in Waltham Forest, London.
Elston Tuitt was found guilty after being prosecuted by Waltham Forest Council for refusing to obtain licences for three rented flats in a single block.
The three apartments were identified by council officers during an ‘action day’ in January. At first Tuitt entered an ‘abuse of process’ application against the council’s decision to prosecute, which was rejected.
Then, at a court case earlier this month, Tuitt’s counsel argued that each flat should not have to be licensed separately, and only one licence should be required for the whole building.
The judge dismissed this argument, supporting the council’s requirement for all individual properties to be licensed.
Tuitt was ordered to pay a fine of £12,000 - £4,000 per offence - and full prosecution costs including the abuse of process application, totalling £12,652.93, plus a £120 victim surcharge. This brought the full financial penalty to £24,772.93.