£16,000 fine for Landlord because tenant played dance music for 36 hours straight!

by Property 118

9:54 AM, 25th May 2017
About A year ago

£16,000 fine for Landlord because tenant played dance music for 36 hours straight!

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£16,000 fine for Landlord because tenant played dance music for 36 hours straight!

47 year old Jason Duffield a Landlord from Birmingham has been convicted of 5 breaches of the Noise Abatement Notice and was ordered to pay a fine of £10,000 plus £6,000 in costs to the council, because his tenant tortured the neighbours with 36 hours of loud dance music.

The tenant then disappeared from the property in Tamworth with no forwarding address.

Jason has now sold the property, but was last year handed a restraining order by police for excessive noise coming from the house and North Warwickshire Borough also gave him an abatement notice.

Jason told reporters “I honestly can’t put into words how I feel about it. It’s made me sick with worry and I have no idea how I will pay the fine.

“I will fight it all the way but it’s just so much extra stress. To get blamed for something I have not done is completely crazy. Even in court, the solicitors and the people next door said they had not seen me at the house.
“I warned the tenant, who said he does play music but not very loudly. The next thing I knew the police had come in and seized goods from the property.”

Assistant chief executive and solicitor to the council, Steve Maxey, said “Jason Duffield repeatedly ignored the warnings from the police and from the council, which not only constituted a flagrant breach of the law, but also caused undue distress and upset to his neighbours in Dordon.”

This then leaves open the question of proportional punishment and responsibility of the Landlord to be debated.



Comments

Dr Rosalind Beck

10:00 AM, 25th May 2017
About A year ago

This is an outrageous decision. According to this landlords can be convicted of their tenants' crimes.
The national landlord bodies should be helping sort the appeal to help this man. Also if it ends up that he does have to pay it we need to have a whip-round to cover the penalty. I know that's not the answer but we should be sticking together.

Gromit

10:42 AM, 25th May 2017
About A year ago

This makes a laughing stock of the judiciary and the judicial system.

Why didn't the judge throw this out - what planet is he/she living on?

This has implications to all Landlords. Why isn't the NLA/RLA campaigning against this?

Monty Bodkin

10:54 AM, 25th May 2017
About A year ago

I don't think the magistrate believed his claim that it was a tenant causing the nuisance.

David Price

10:56 AM, 25th May 2017
About A year ago

This had to happen sooner or later for holding landlords responsible for the behaviour of their tenants was first proposed for Northern Ireland (I believe) and quashed after protests. Just which statute enables one person to be held responsible for another's actions? If anybody knows please enlighten me. What the hell was in the Judge's head? What are the council trying to achieve, do they want less accommodation to be available? What happened to the tenant, was he prosecuted, no he left without a forwarding address (the landlord's fault of course)? When Jason Duffield was warned just what was he supposed to do, what tools were at his disposal to control the tenant? So many questions with no answers.

Kate Mellor

11:56 AM, 25th May 2017
About A year ago

Call me cynical, but I strongly suspect there is much more to this story than meets the eye...

Mark Lynham

11:58 AM, 25th May 2017
About A year ago

incredible... Councils are becoming unreasonable and should get their own house in order... hopefully this will get overturned or we are all very vulnerable at the hands of a bad tenant..

KATHY MILLER

12:06 PM, 25th May 2017
About A year ago

If this was as anti-social as reported why were the Police and Council not supporting the landlord to address the problem. If the landlord had evicted the tenant then would they have given written evidence to push throu a quick eviction.
Its just so easy to always blame the landlord.

Sometimes tenanst are picked on by neighbours who club together and think nothing of emailing and saying untruths to get rid of them. They also think it is very easy to evict a bad tenant when in fact every year it gets harder.

But this will set a extremely bad precedent if not won at appeal. Councils already will go after the landlord before the tenant on lots of things ie rubbish. Landlords cannot be held for a tenants behaviour to the extent of being fined .

Ian Narbeth

12:07 PM, 25th May 2017
About A year ago

Reply to the comment left by "Kate Mellor" at "25/05/2017 - 11:56":

This link http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/neighbour-hell-played-hip-hop-13056860 gives a different version of the story. Can everyone calm down and let's find out the facts before having a whip round and criticising the court?

Dylan Morris

12:13 PM, 25th May 2017
About A year ago

Reply to the comment left by "Kate Mellor" at "25/05/2017 - 11:56":

I agree Kate there must be a lot more to this story. Why didn't the landlord cancel the tenancy and evict the tenant ? Did he make any effort to do so ? There's no way I'd put up with a tenant causing nuisance to neighbours. We've only got the landlord's version, be interesting to hear the other side. We have very little real detail of events here.

Michael Bond

12:14 PM, 25th May 2017
About A year ago

Surely the first response to complaints about loud noise from a tenant is to bring in the Local Authority on the landlord's side. Landlords do not have the equipment or knowledge to assess noise nuisance. We don't understand Decibels and all that. So, ask the Local Authority's "noise person", who is probably part of the Environmental Health team, to visit and measure and assess the noise level. This probably needs to be done more than once. Then go to Court for possession, calling the "noise person" as witness. No one can claim that the landlord has not taken action.

But this is shutting the door after the horse has bolted for Jason.

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