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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

A message to the public: Speak out against rogue letting agents

The Local Government Association, representing 370 councils across England and Wales, is calling on the public to speak out against rogue letting agents.

The LGA likens rogue agents’ activities to the fraudulent practices of cowboy roofers and bogus faith healers. 

In a statement to mark ‘National Scam Awareness Month’ the LGA cites a letting agent who scammed more than 60 tenants and landlords out of more than £220,000 of rent and deposits, who was then jailed for four-and-a-half years following an investigation by Barnet council.

The scam left some victims tens of thousands of pounds out of pocket, some without a home and others unable to care for ill relatives.

The association says local authorities can help victims of scams get their money back from fraudsters through Proceeds of Crime hearings. 

"Scammers often target the vulnerable but anyone can be fooled by a bogus businessman or scheme, as fraudsters are always devising new ways to trick people out of their savings. Trading Standards teams see at first-hand the devastation but victims shouldn't suffer in silence or feel embarrassed. By reporting a scam, people can help someone else avoid being a victim” says a spokesman.

  • Mark Alexander

    Property118 Action Group Fighting Crime

    There are many examples of landlords having been victims of fraud by abuse of position committed by their letting agent where Police and CPS have dropped cases due to lack of resource.

    We have several cases ongoing where agents have used client money to pay themselves huge bonuses before putting their businesses into administration. As a result of the Police failing to get involved Property118 Action Group has been helping to raise the funding necessary to mount private criminal prosecutions on behalf of our members. Many of these are now coming to trial.

    Property118 Action Group pay all initial costs associated with private criminal prosecutions where groups of 15 or more of our members have been victims of crimes perpetrated by the same business. The Crown picks up legal costs once Magistrates agree that a trial is in the interests of the public, regardless of whether the accused is found innocent or guilty.

    For more details please see https://www.property118.com/fighting-for-landlords-letting-agents/88096/

  • Mark Alexander

    PS - we are also looking to form Strategic Alliances with Letting Agents who recognise the benefits of ensuring that Justice is served to criminal operators who tarnish the reputation of our industry.

    Please see https://www.property118.com/strategic-alliances/

  • icon

    Nice adverts lads but who will start the list of bad tenant for all agents to read. It only needs one and a bit of crowd funding to pay legal fees and hay presto a list will emerge.

    If however its in the public domain of the law court reports what is the problem of publishing. All you have to do is quote the court reference to stay legal.

    First to start gets a big bonus "thank god" from all who have suffered.

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