A landlord in Watford was fined £30,000 for allowing 12 people to be housed in a flat designed for 5 people. The cramped conditions allowed no communal living space and was found to be in a filthy state.
It's not clear whether the tenants were UK nationals or foreigners. This will become relevant as new provisions set out in the Immigration Bill 2015-2016 will also crack down on unscrupulous landlords who fail to carry out right to rent checks and allow illegal immigrants into rented properties.
Landlords could face up to 5 years imprisonment and confiscation of rent when the new measures kick in early next year across the whole of England. The "right to check" immigration status measures are currently in place in the West Midlands and the pilot scheme will be rolled out nationwide.
A landlord who made almost £27,000 a year by cramming 12 tenants into a property meant for five – with some sleeping in storerooms – has been fined £30,000 after pleading guilty to overcrowding. Zuo Jun He admitted 11 charges under the Housing Act when he appeared before Watford magistrates on Monday including two of allowing more people to live in the property than were covered by his House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) licence.