A bogus gas fitter has tricked landlords out of hundreds of pounds for botched work and forged safety certificates.
Investigators from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) fear Keith Downie has left a trail of incompetent work in his wake while trading as All Systems in Darlington, County Durham.
Darlington Magistrates Court heard three unsafe gas installations were unearthed at buy to let homes after complaints about Downie’s work.
Downie, 51, admitted six gas safety offences. The case was adjourned for reports and Downie was warned he faces a jail sentence when he attends Newton Aycliffe Magistrates’ Court for sentencing on December 9.
The court was told tenants in the homes were in danger of carbon monoxide poisoning, fire and explosions because Downie’s work was so bad.
He admitted he had no training in gas installation and had never registered as a qualified engineer.
Instead, he forged certificates in the names of other local certified engineers
Fire risk flats
A professional landlord with a large property portfolio around Morecambe, Lancashire, pleaded guilty to fire safety breaches at a block of flats he lets out to tenants.
Preston Magistrates Court was told Eli Zohar, 68, was accused of ignoring an enforcement notice on the flats in Morecambe served by Lancashire Fire and Rescue.
Zohar will be sentenced at Preston Crown Court On December 12.
Landlord Michael Scholes was fined £12,000 and ordered to pay £3,000 costs for house in multiple occupation (HMO) safety and management offences at Leeds Magistrates Court.
Scholes failed to attend the hearing.
The court was told Leeds City Council ordered Scholes to carry out repairs and improvements at an unlicensed HMO. Scholes repeatedly ignored the requests.
Councillor Peter Gruen, Leeds City Council executive member for neighbourhoods, planning and personnel said: “Despite the council advising Scholes about his responsibilities and duties as a landlord he failed to sort out a range of issues as part of his HMO licence.
“Over several years he failed to deal with fire safety contraventions. Scholes also failed to produce an electrical safety certificate for the property>”
Unsafe shared house
Landlord Munir Nathanie, 38, pleaded guilty to eight HMO safety and management offences at Leicester Magistrates Court.
Nathanie was fined £16,000 and ordered to pay £2,157 costs.
The court was told the HMO which was home for seven tenants in Leicester had failings including a faulty fire alarm system, unsafe electrical wiring and a fire escape which was poorly maintained.