A Sheffield landlord evicted a woman who couldn’t speak fluent English from her flat without any notice, forcing her to sleep on the streets, a court heard.
Sheffield Magistrates’ Court heard it was the second time that Naveed Hussain, 36, of Pitsmoor Road, had been prosecuted for offences of a similar nature.
The court heard on Tuesday how Saba Habte moved into the flat on The Wicker in December 2015 on the recommendation of a fellow student in her English class.
But just over a year later, on December 15, 2016, the tenant was drinking a cup of tea in her room when Hussain appeared at the door and insisted she had to leave the property that day.
When she objected, Mr Hussain said ‘it is my house and I can do as I choose’ and took the key from the door and put it in his pocket.
Paul Barber, prosecuting for Sheffield Council, said: “That night Ms Habte stayed outside in the cold in the bus station. She suffered the indignity of losing her home and sleeping on the streets, but also some of her belongings weren’t there when she went to get them.
"Salvation Army Officers who assisted her with retrieval of her belongings described Hussain as having an attitude of contempt towards her.”
Hussain was prosecuted under the Protection from Eviction Act 1977. The case has been adjourned for sentencing.
Coun Jayne Dunn, cabinet member for housing and community safety at Sheffield City Council, said: “We take these cases very seriously. The majority of landlords across the city are decent and hard-working but a few seem to have little care for the responsibilities that come with letting a property.
“We believe that unlawful eviction, the threat of unlawful eviction, and harassment or intimidation are amongst the very worst kind of rogue landlord behaviour.
“For this reason we take a very tough stance against landlords who do this and have carried out six successful prosecutions in the past year.
“We believe Sheffield’s private tenants are amongst the most-protected in the country and taking prosecutions like this are part of our commitment to making sure that high standards of accommodation and responsible management prevail in the sector.”
Following the prosecution, Ms Habte said: “I’m very pleased especially hearing the outcome of the case and I am pleased with how the Council has acted and for (their) support”.