6th March 2014
A loan shark has been jailed for three years at Manchester Crown Court.
Sandra Dawn Lowe, of Arnott Street, Hulme was convicted of 16 counts of illegal money lending and money laundering. She had been running the illegal business for more than seven years.
The 51-year-old was arrested in July 2012 when officers from the England Illegal Money Lending Team executed a warrant at her home. During the search they found notebooks with details of her illicit business and nearly £800 in cash.
5th March 2014
Land Registry has launched a new service to support people who think their property is at risk from fraud.
Homeowners that sign up to the Property Alert service online will be sent emails when official searches and applications are received against a monitored property.
Though the new service is free, only those who have registered their homes with Land Registry can use it. Registration costs vary depending on a property's value. Homes worth £80,000-£100,000 cost £70 to register, whi...
4th March 2014
The residents of a London borough are being asked to help the authorities combat illegal raves.
Newham Council and Newham Police have appealed to those living in the area to help them tackle the problem after three people at an illegal warehouse party in Beckton were hospitalised by a bad batch of the drug MDMA last month.
Residents are being asked to report suspicious activity such as flyers advertising raves being posted in an area or on social media; large vans or lorries being driven into fact...
3rd March 2014
A couple have been ordered by a tribunal to demolish two 'beds in sheds' they rented out illegally.
Hillingdon Council took action against Rajwant Singh and Gurbax Kaur after discovering the pair had been renting out the main building at 179 Coldharbour Lane, Hayes to more than seven people without licensing the property as a house of multiple occupation (HMO), and were leasing two illegal outbuildings in the garden as accommodation.
The council became one of the first local authorities in London to use...
3rd March 2014
An ex-GMTV presenter who swindled £76,000 in housing benefit has been spared jailed.
Louise Port failed to declare an £87,000 stake in a property when claiming the welfare from Westminster City Council.
Judge Anthony Pitts told Port, 37, that he was suspending her 18-month sentence for two years as an "act of mercy".
Port, 37, who lost her job as a GMTV reporter when she refused to work nights due to epilepsy issues, stole the money to pay off her credit card bills.
The crook was f...
3rd March 2014
A social housing tenant is facing eviction after her landlord discovered a dead dog in her kitchen.
Salix Homes made the macabre discovery at the home of Margaret Martin, of Monsal Avenue, Salford.
Besides the decomposing animal, which had been dead for several days, housing officers found piles of rubbish and dog faeces scattered about the premises.
The landlord took legal after last April's discovery and the tenant has now been hit with a suspended possession order.
At a hearing last month, Manchest...
28th February 2014
A woman who was caught renting out an illegal 'bed in shed' outbuilding has demolished the dwelling.
Waltham Forest Council gathered evidence that suggested the property had been occupied by more than one individual.
This resulted in the council bringing prosecutions against Ghazala Bostan, both in relation to a breach of a planning enforcement order and failing to comply with a prohibition order under the Housing Act 2004.
Bostan, 38, was fined £1,000 by magistrates and ordered to pay cost...
27th February 2014
A serial benefit crook has been jailed for a second time following his latest criminal plot.
Patrick Allen claimed housing benefit for properties in Hornsey and Islington for 10 years despite buying a £250,000 home in Enfield and holding more than £48,000 in savings.
Allen, 39, was previously jailed for nearly four years for fraud in 2000, but soon returned to his criminal ways on release by fraudulently claiming housing benefit for a flat in Islington where he did not have a genui...
26th February 2014
A social housing tenant who subjected her neighbours to years of torment with constant noise, fighting and threatening behaviour has been evicted.
Housing association Salix Homes took legal action against Tanya Manning, of Floral Court, Salford, on the grounds of her repeated anti-social behaviour.
Manning has a long history of anti-social and criminal behaviour at her property, including threatening her neighbours with violence, playing loud music, constant visitors at all hours of the day and n...
25th February 2014
A fired housing chief executive is facing a massive legal bill after losing a court battle with her former employer.
Odu-Dua Housing Association suspended former CEO Lara Oyedele last October and then took her to court when she insisted the suspension was illegitimate.
Last week, a judge at the Central London County court ruled that Ms Oyedele's suspension was legitimate and ordered her to pay £13,682 to Odu-Dua.
However, she will also be required to pay the 289-home provider's legal fees, ...