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Sentencing awaited after breach of council licensing regime

A council’s first case for non-compliance with its landlord licensing regime has seen one individual plead guilty to 12 offences - and he is now awaiting sentencing. 

John Bradley of Coulby Newham on Teesside will be sentenced on March 23 after pleading guilty to 12 offences of being in control or managing a property without having a licence. 

Over the last 12 months the local Middlesbrough council says it has exceeded its expectations by receiving 608 applications, representing 81 per cent of the licensable properties.

A multi-agency team consisting of a licensing officer, environmental health staff and others has carried out inspections at more than 280 properties, with follow-up actions including referrals to the fire brigade and reports relating to environmental issues such as fly-tipping.

In most cases the landlord has fixed the disrepair voluntarily, but in some cases legal powers have been required, says the authority.

Those landlords who have not applied for a licence under the scheme are now being actively pursued, via legal proceedings which could ultimately lead to prosecution, it insists.

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