Council Evicts Drug Dealer

Loses Roehampton flat for breaching tenancy rules


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Twenty-year-old Nicholas Brown was convicted at Kingston Crown Court of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs after he was seen hurling wraps of heroin from a car that police were attempting to stop.

Police tried to stop the car in Roehampton Lane but it sped off. Officers later recovered dozens of individually wrapped "street deals" of heroin. He was subsequently jailed for three years and nine months.

By committing a serious criminal offence Mr Brown breached his tenancy conditions - part of the legal agreement he signed when given the keys to his flat in Hurstbourne House in Tangley Grove.

Under the terms of this agreement, which applies to all the council's rented accommodation, all tenants, their household members, lodgers, friends and visitors are forbidden from a range of criminal and anti-social activities. Breaches of the agreement render them liable to eviction.

These rules apply not just to an individual housing block or the immediate vicinity of the property, but cover the entire borough of Wandsworth.

Housing spokesman Cllr Paul Ellis said: "We will take the toughest action we can against tenants who commit criminal or anti-social acts in Wandsworth. There is no room on our housing estates for people who choose to deal drugs. When you move into a Wandsworth Council-owned property, you must agree to comply with certain tenancy conditions that prohibit criminal behaviour. People who break those conditions face the very real risk of losing that accommodation."

The tenancy conditions, which were drawn up in close consultation with residents living on the borough's housing estates, are designed to tackle bad behaviour that impacts on others.

Examples of criminal or anti-social behaviour which are likely to lead to legal action from the housing department include:

* using or threatening to use violence
* hate crime or harassment due to race, religion, faith, disability, age, gender or sexual orientation
* creating noise at a level that is intrusive or disturbing to neighbours
damaging property
* drug or alcohol abuse and drug dealing
* dumping rubbish
* criminal activity in properties
* graffiti and other markings
* domestic disputes eg shouting etc
* throwing things out of windows
* not keeping pets under control and allowing dogs to bark and foul
* not controlling children properly

Over the past three years 22 tenants have been evicted from council-owned accommodation for breaching the tenancy conditions as a result of their criminal and/or anti-social behaviour.

The agreement also contains information about the responsibilities of both tenants and the council when it comes to making repairs and a tenant's rights to compensation if the council does not complete a repair in reasonable time. It also provides advice on how to make a complaint about the council's housing services.

June 28, 2012