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Dagenham landlords fined over £13,000 for illegal evictions

Mr Rotimi and his wife were fined £13,474 following a number of breaches (Pic-Met Police)

A Dagenham couple have been fined more than £13,000 after they illegally evicted four of their tenants.

Landlords Stephen Kayode Rotimi and his wife Fadeke changed the locks on their property, in Maplestead Road, while their tenants were at work. 

Some of the tenants had significant medical conditions and were unable to access their medicine while they were locked out. 

One of them contacted council staff and explained they had a tenancy agreement and paid their rent via bank transfer. 

Council officers visited the property multiple times but Mr Rotimi denied the allegations and claimed the tenants had left voluntarily. 

The officers discovered he had previously stopped the tenants from topping up their electric and gas metres. 

Mr Rotimi was found guilty of unlawful eviction and breach of management regulations and was ordered to pay a total of £13,474.

He also breached several other housing regulations, including failing to display the landlord’s contact information, failure to ensure an up to date electrical certificate was available, failing to maintain the internal structure was in good repair and failure to ensure there were adequate disposal refuse disposal facilities.

“We’re more than happy for private landlords to operate in the borough, but they must follow the rules set and this individual certainly hasn’t,” said councillor Margaret Mullane, cabinet member for enforcement and community safety. 

“He knew some of his tenants personally, but still failed to provide suitable housing for them even though they paid their rent and then ultimately illegally evicted them.

“In Barking and Dagenham, all private landlords much be registered with the council, so we can ensure that they are following the regulations in place.”

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