A ‘millionaire rogue landlord’ from Harborne has had his property shut down following complaints of crime relating to tenants in the property, marking the first in the area for a conviction of this type.
The run-down and dilapidated house situated in Wolverhampton Street was one of four properties owned by landlord Latif Rehman. All of the homes had been converted into bedsits without permission from the council. The 58-year-old buy to let investor had kept the funds paid to him by Dudley Council in housing benefits for tenants. The court heard that the crooked landlord had amassed assets of more than £1 million, yet was also taking in around £150,000 a year just in rent from his property portfolio.
The Harborne landlord admitted four charges of breaching council enforcement notices earlier this year, and was subsequently ordered to pay more than £340,000 when convicted at Wolverhampton Crown Court last month. The sum paid included £280,000 under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
However, reports of anti-social behaviour and crime at the property led to the West Midlands Police securing a closure order against the address. The force had already been taking action against the landlord following reports of nuisance behaviour on the premises. It was then granted a three-month closure order at Wolverhampton Magistrates Court on October 12.
Sergeant Adam Revell, from the Dudley neighbourhood team, commented on the case and conviction: ‘This is the first time we have pursued an order against such a property in this area. We received a number of complaints about nuisance coming from the property − which was in a squalid condition – and built up a strong case of evidence to obtain the order. This will hopefully bring some peace to the community and reassure the public we will take steps to prevent anti-social behaviour.’