Landlord Hussam Hussain has failed in a legal challenge against repaying tenants £500,000 in rents he charged for illegally letting out flats.
Hussain was ordered to pay the money after a court heard he ignored planning laws and rented out nine flats in a converted family house in Willesden, North London, for five years.
Brent Council prosecuted him for failing to comply with enforcement notices demanding he should top letting the property.
Hussain was told to repay the rents and £38,000 legal costs and fined £20,000.
Hussain, who now lives in Canada, appealed the decision as unfair and excessive at the Court of Appeal, but his plea was rejected and the financial penalties stand.
Councillor Margaret McLennan, Brent Council’s lead member for regeneration and housing, said: “Rogue landlords are absolutely not welcome in Brent.
“This landlord ignored planning rules designed to ensure that residents and neighbours are protected and I am pleased that the Court of Appeal has upheld the original judge’s decision that he should payback all the rent received.”
Landlord Jaroslaw Piotrowsk, of Witney Rooms Ltd, was fined £400 and ordered to pay £1,950 in cost and compensation after admitting illegally evicting a tenant.
Oxford Magistrates Court was told Piotrowsk changed the locks on a home when the tenant went out and refused to allow him back in despite requests from council officers.
Councillor David Harvey, cabinet member responsible for private sector housing, said: “Landlords cannot ignore the law and assume they can evict tenants without going through the correct procedure.
“This case sends out a clear message that the council, when its advice and guidance is ignored, will use its powers to prosecute landlords who disregard the law and that we will provide assistance to anyone living in private rented accommodation facing similar issues.”
No heating or hot water
Tenants were left in their rented homes for more than two years without heating and hot water, Maidstone Magistrates Court was told.
Rattan Singh and Balbir Kaur ignored a series of orders to improve the properties, which had a catalogue of health and safety defects.
They admitted 19 housing management offences and were fined £20,000 and ordered to pay £750 costs.