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Rogue landlord who rented out ‘Rio slum’ flats in Barking must pay £235k or face jail

PUBLISHED: 12:21 20 April 2017 | UPDATED: 12:45 20 April 2017

The illegal outhouse in Longbridge Road. Picture: BDCOUNCIL

The illegal outhouse in Longbridge Road. Picture: BDCOUNCIL

Archant

A Barking landlord who rented out filthy flats in an illegal extension that were likened to a ‘Rio slum’ has been ordered to pay £235,649.

The filthy flats were being rented out at £2,850 per month. Picture: BDCOUNCIL The filthy flats were being rented out at £2,850 per month. Picture: BDCOUNCIL

Zoofshan Malik of Upney Lane, made £2,850 a month in rental income from the ‘beds in sheds’ at the back of a property she owned in Longbridge Road.

The audacious 47-year-old used Emerson Knight Estates Ltd, a lettings company she was the director of, to find tenants for the four flats.

She was caught when officers from the council received an anonymous tip-off about the ramshackle 37ft extension and swooped on the building.

Last week at a confiscation hearing she was told she must hand over £222,000 in three months or face two years imprisonment.

Malik must pay £235,000 or face jail. Picture: BDCOUNCIL Malik must pay £235,000 or face jail. Picture: BDCOUNCIL

Recorder Milliken Smith also fined her £2,000 for the illegal extension with three months to pay or face 30 days in jail.

Malik must also pay £11,649 in costs.

Councillor Laila Butt, cabinet member for community safety and enforcement, said: “This is a victory for tenants, decent landlords and the dogged determination of our diligent investigation and enforcement officers.

“It’s more evidence that this council will relentlessly pursue rogue landlords in our resolve to stand up for decent housing standards for Londoners.”

She added: “This illegal extension and filthy flats would not have looked out of place in a Rio slum. Through our tough enforcement action they have been demolished so no one else has to suffer such bad living conditions.

“What makes matters worse is her connection to the estate agency - she knew the law and was intentionally exploiting people who find it hard enough to find property to rent at affordable prices.”

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