Four people guilty of a total of 28 charges of conspiring to unlawfully evict and harassing tenants in Cliftonville’s Athelstan Road have been jailed.
In a case prosecuted by Thanet District Council, Judge Rupert Lowe, sitting at Canterbury Crown Court, passed sentence on Monday 10 October, on the four defendants who threatened, harassed and attacked tenants. In one case, a tenant was doused in petrol and punched causing the loss of several teeth.
The main defendant, Sohila Tamiz, of Flint Lane, Lenham, was given 14 custodial sentences ranging from six to 12 months, some of which were concurrent and some consecutive. This culminated in a total sentence of five years’ imprisonment.
Thanet District Council brought what is believed to be the largest ever prosecution of its type, for offences under the Protection from Eviction Act 1977, after investigating a series of related allegations of criminal activity taking place in a building containing 26 flats.
Tenants of the Athelstan Road property were routinely harassed, threatened and unlawfully evicted without notice; locks were changed and some tenants’ belongings removed or thrown onto the street. Electrical supplies were regularly cut off.
The allegations shared with council officers were extremely serious in nature. The prosecution was brought to achieve justice for some of the most vulnerable residents in the community and to deter others from committing similar acts.
Of the other three defendants in the case, Pedram Tamiz, also of Flint Lane, Lenham, was given seven custodial sentences ranging from five to 11 months, some of which were concurrent and some consecutive, culminating in a total sentence of three years and four months’ imprisonment.
Adam McChesney, of Gloucester Avenue, Margate, was subject to five custodial sentences ranging from six to eight months, some of which were concurrent and some consecutive. This culminated in a total sentence of one year and eight months’ imprisonment. Mr McChesney’s total sentence was suspended for 24 months by Judge Lowe, who further ordered that he must carry out 250 hours of unpaid work.
Kasem El Darrat, of Athelstan Road, Margate ,was sentenced to a 12-month community order, and must carry out 150 hours of unpaid work and attend 15 Rehabilitation Activity Requirement days.
In July 2022, the four were found guilty by a jury at Canterbury Crown Court of a total of 28 offences including conspiring to unlawfully evict a tenant, conspiring to burgle and conspiring to interfere with, and directly interfering with, the peace or comfort of a residential occupier.
The council also applied to the court for compensation for the victims.
Judge Lowe agreed to the applications, saying: “These are genuine victims who have suffered terror, shock and distress, the loss of property, and in one case serious injury. I therefore believe compensation orders are appropriate.”
Ten compensation orders were made totalling £30,500, which must be paid by Sohila Tamiz, Pedram Tamiz and Adam McChesney in varying proportions.
Cllr Ash Ashbee, Leader of Thanet District Council, said “The sentences that the judge handed down today reflect the severity of the crimes committed by these four individuals.
“This was a landmark prosecution for us, and one of the largest ever brought for this kind of criminal activity in England. This outcome sends out a strong message to other landlords and agents in the district that we will not hesitate to prosecute you if you unlawfully evict or harass your tenants.
“I would like to thank the council’s Private Sector Housing Team which worked tirelessly on this case for over three years and was determined to get justice for the victims.”
Applications for Criminal Behaviour Orders were also made by the council. The court agreed to orders against both Sohila Tamiz and Pedram Tamiz. The orders, which are for an indefinite period of time, unless subject to a further order, ban them from engaging in letting agency or property management work, and from acting as a residential landlord in England. Neither party is permitted to enter Athelstan Road or Hadlow Drive, Margate for any purpose.
Judge Lowe also ordered Sohila Tamiz, Pedram Tamiz and Adam McChesney, in varying proportions, to pay prosecution costs of £200,000. Sohila Tamiz must pay £125,000 within 18 months; Pedram Tamiz must pay £62,500 within 18 months, and Adam McChesney must pay £12,500 within 36 months. All four guilty parties must also pay a statutory surcharge.
a cliftonville was rated 8th best place by time out how……. well least thats my landlords gone now anyway but the new estate agents dont seem too far different in some ways
Maybe it was eighth best for frequency of encountering dog mess on the pavements.
Cliftonville was rated the 8th coolest place to live, not the 8th best.
A worthy effort by TDC, and an excellent outcome by the court.
It’s great to see that not only will these people be imprisoned, but are also facing costs and fines totalling into the £100,000s.
Although as asked when the story broke here months back-why was it allowed to carry on happening despite complaints to the council & police? This started in 2007
Why was this not happening a decade or more years back, before people were regularly having their homes smashed up, having their goods stolen & in one case somebody having their face smashed to pieces & being doused in petrol by hired thugs?
As for the pathetic little worms like McChesney claiming they were under some type of mind control from the boss woman in a desperate attempt at mitigation, maybe you went along once & did it & then said never again would be believable, but how do you say you are disgusted with yourselves when you kept going back year after year?
Tdc break rules all the time. Set up gofundme and get a case going
Exactly! Sadly, I had the dubious pleasure of working for TDC and these names were WELL known back then by everyone in and around Benefits, Housing, Customer Services etc. Their crimes widely reported and yet, nothing would get done.
I could only conclude that the reasons it was allowed to happen for so long were:
1. Apathy – Many officers and managers were just going through the motions to get the job done and get home
2. Dependency – The council, like all councils, depends on the private landlords to cope with the housing crisis in Thanet. Like it or not (and I don’t), TDC relies on private landlords to ensure people aren’t on the streets or knocking at TDC’s door for housing. In that context, it is easy to see why multiple elected members and senior staff have turned a blind eye to these crimes
Thanks for the insight& I think you have confirmed what most of us suspected about those running TDC over the years.
Apathy-I can buy it from lower members of staff, but not from senior staff/bosses getting complaints over & over & seeing the crap-storm coming their way if they do nothing.
Dependency-makes more sense, but if those people are being physically threatened & assaulted & it happens to whoever takes their place when they leave then it doesn’t solve anything to have these garbage people running around committing crimes & know it is eventually going to bite them in the ass.
TDC are very fortunate they haven’t been sued for placing people in accommodation where they knew they were going to be subjected to everything from having their goods stolen, to hired gangs of thugs beating them to a pulp & threatening to set them on fire.
not to mention the rent is between 600 and 800 a month and they got so little a fine and compo fines its absolute madness, what happened to that deortation for forgein criminals they have earnt so much thru rent and illegimate business (one of the other tennnats had to use a room to grow cannabis for them) and now after they earnt all that money they are now having tax payers pay for their rent, keep etc
Another joke-last week the car wash gang master, tax cheat got off with a slap on the wrist & now community service orders & low jail terms for a decade plus of organised terrorism/theft etc to law abiding tenants. Let’s hope these vermin cannot afford to pay the fines & end up serving longer.
One ponders why TDC & Kent Police are not in the dock themselves, for ignoring this for so long despite all the complaints & being asked why they did by a prosecutor & the judge.
Well done TDC for getting some justice for those tenants as they won’t be able to rent the property property out if they already haven’t they will have to sell the properties to pay for all of the fines and costs etc if they came here seeking asylum then we should deport them for their criminal activity and the same for anyone else coming here seeking asylum and doing criminal activities as they are not welcome,
But why did it take nearly 15 years for anything to happen as this was going on from 2007-2021? TDC & Kent Police should be in the dock as well to answer as to why they did nothing for so long-despite the complaints.
Take them to court. Smug and guilty all those in housing.
The reason is simple, Steve. The police and local authorities in England prefer to bury their heads in the sand whenever foreigners are involved in crime until push comes to shove. It is all down to this legalistic madness called hate crime legislation whereby we are paralysed in the face of foreign criminal activity. That’s why this prosecution took so long to be enacted.
The really daft bit is that selective livensing came in in 2011, so 4 years after the problems were known the building and its management still got a licence, how on earth was that possible? ( it must have had a licence otherwise there would have been a prosecution for not having had one)
deport them back to where ever they say they come from , we dont need them here. oh hold on i suppose i am being landlordist or some other made up c**p
The point is, you are being racist, and you are well aware of that. The reason why your comments are racist is because you seem to labouring under the pretense that a) it was their race/ethnicity that caused them to behave in this way and b) by making it an issue of race/ethnicity, you forget that rogue landlords come from all over, including (and brace yourself for this…) your beautiful Sceptered Isle, Blighty. I’m sorry, this must come as a shock to you.
Steve the only answer I can say is proof must be good enough for conviction, I really believe that 3 years getting the proof to convict these people is not really a long time but those who have been ill treated it will seem never ending, but where do you get 15 years from according to the press release that Ash Ashbee said that the private sector team has been working on the case for over 3 years I have only gone on what is written as many of us have if as you say it has been going on for 15 years there has definitely been at least a break down of investigation meaning not enough work done on what information was known most likely not enough man hours used to get the proof be it police or council..
The term racist is a made-up word on the part of Leon Davidovich Trotsky in 1927. Now used in exactly the same way on here by MargateJim … a means of silencing a view you do not like. It is now the basis of what is now termed hate crime.
Deportation after serving a prison sentence should be mandatory and automatic. These people are the scum of the earth and should never be allowed to prosper in our land. Put an end to this walking on eggshells and face facts.
Far from silencing the views of racists, I am perfectly fine with the likes of you and real world making fools of yourselves and demonstrating to the world how small-minded, bigoted and ignorant you are.
Again, for the benefit of the thick/wilfully ignorant, these people didn’t commit their crimes because they’re foreign. They did it because they’re nasty, greedy and void of any decency. Bringing their race into it is racist, whether you choose to accept that or not.
I don’t know you. I don’t wish to know you, but I’m pretty certain I’d sooner deport myself than get to know you. You and the likes of real world are everything that is wrong with this country.
MargateJim, I did not mention the race of the scum who are the main subject on here. I referred to foreigners. That is not racist and something quite different altogether.
You throw the word racist around like confetti thinking it will serve to demonise the likes of me. Yet you fail to hit the target you set up because the word is so overused that it loses all meaning and relevance.
Throw these kind of people out. They are a malignancy and toxic.
You’re quibbling over semantics, Mr Edwards. If you ascribe actions to someone simply because they are foreign, then that’s racism.
And unpleasant, and unnecessary. These criminals are guilty of a whole bunch of offences- not one if them of “being foreign ”
Accept the reality, Mr E: your are a racist.
I do not accept the racist label. It is purely pejorative.
You can type as much whataboutery as you like, yet the fact remains that you were being racist/xenophobic/bigoted etc. It is there for everyone to see. Everyone understands exactly what you and real world mean.
Now, if you or real world had originally stated, “Let’s kick these nasty landlord, criminals and scumbags out of the country, they have no place in decent society”, that would be a perfectly reasonable statement, and one which I could get behind. But real world didn’t, and neither did you, initially. Your last sentence (“Throw these kind of people out. They are a malignancy and toxic.”), assuming you are simply referring to nasty criminals, irrespective of country of origin, is one I agree with.
The sort of people who believe words like ‘racist’ have lost all meaning or relevance are, in my experience, usually racists. So, you’ll forgive me if I disagree with you.
I made no reference to the race of the subjects on this thread. Indeed, I referred only to foreigners throughout for the sole purpose they be deported after serving a sentence.
Again, you are throwing this word racist around hoping it will stick. It has not achieved your purpose and never will. The reason why this is so is that it is a Trotkyist misnomer. That is to say, the issue of race is not dealt with on here.
You need to report this racism to the police then. Are you going to?
Any criminal who is not from UK needs to be chucked out. If that were possible then only place we would be able to send them is where they are from. MSM have brainwashed people into looking for offence whenever they can.
We have enough lowlifes in this country that are born here, we dont need them from other countries too. But that is what uncontrolled immigration does.
Another court case ongoing at 2-14 High Street, Margate CT9 1AT there trying to evict the tenants.
Wow real world’s post is ok but my post that was up is now down…
KB is inconsistent in her censorship
I shouldn’t have to keep moderating you all, perhaps people could exercise some self restraint.
Nasty people who should all be in jail & banned from renting in the future.