Prison warning for landlord over unpaid fines
A LANDLORD prosecuted for renting a property which had deteriorated into an "appalling" condition has been ordered to pay his fines or go to prison.
Jasbir Baryah was given six months to pay £11,000 to Bristol City Council last June for a series of health and safety breaches.
On Tuesday the care home owner appealed at a Bristol Magistrates' Court hearing to pay the outstanding debt in installments of £500 a month.
But District Judge Simon Cooper dismissed his appeal and ordered him to sell one of his family's 20 properties or face custody.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
Baryah, of Fishponds Road, said he was trying to remortgage his assets, which include convenience stores and post offices, but was struggling.
He added he was under financial strain as one of his stores had been in "perpetual decline" since a new Tesco moved into the area.
However, Judge Cooper demanded: "You have got to start selling some assets. It's time to sell off one of them and I will give you three months to do so."
Judge Cooper gave Baryah a three-month suspended prison sentence and ordered a review at the end of it, to look at how his payments were progressing.
Baryah first appeared in court on May 30 last year, facing charges of neglect over his multi-occupancy property at 183 Wells Road, Totterdown.
He admitted breaching environmental health regulations as the property fell into disrepair while up to a dozen tenants were living there.
The Post reported at the time that when city council environmental health officers visited the property – a former care home – in May 2011, they found up to 12 people living there.
Kate Burnham-Davies, prosecuting on behalf of the city council, said the officers found filthy conditions, a lack of lighting, mould, extreme dirt and a vast deterioration of the property, which had an unsafe structure.
She said part of the kitchen was "coated in grease", one of the bathrooms had "dark stains of faeces" and an extension "looked more like a garden shed".
"It was well below standards expected," Ms Burnham-Davies added.
When police officers attended the property, she said: "It seemed to be occupied by a large group of adults of varying ages, along with children and a baby".
"Some of the occupants were found to be Bulgarian," said Ms Burnham- Davies. "One of the occupants, a Mr Nikolov, assisted officers in the inspection."
Mr Nikolov told the officers that he collected the rent and delivered it to Baryah or his accountant at his office in Clifton.
Baryah admitted renting the property to Mr Nikolov and told police he visited annually or when something was reported.
He also said he did not know the names of any of the people who were living there.
Ms Burnham-Davies added: "He clearly knew that it was his responsibility to comply with the regulations."
Baryah admitted a series of offences involving breaches of safety, cleanliness, ventilation and lighting regulations, among others.
He was fined a total of £5,000 and ordered to pay £6,000 in prosecution costs within six months.