£6,000 bill for rogue landlady who sublet Banbury home

Edmunds Road, Banbury. NNL-190514-135958009
Edmunds Road, Banbury. NNL-190514-135958009

Magistrates have ordered a social housing tenant to repay thousands of pounds of rent she received by illegally subletting the Banbury property.

Rogue landlady Justyna Koczela, 43, of Zaulek Wisniowy, Poland was ordered to pay £6,254.90, comprising a fine, unlawful profit order, costs, and a victim surcharge.

Edmunds Road, Banbury where a rogue landlady sublet social a housing property NNL-190514-135947009

Edmunds Road, Banbury where a rogue landlady sublet social a housing property NNL-190514-135947009

Meanwhile the family who innocently rented the house in Edmunds Road, Bretch Hill are waiting to be rehoused.

A Cherwell District Council spokesman said: “A Banbury family is being supported into new accommodation after their former landlady was convicted of illegally renting out social housing.

On Monday Ms Koczela was convicted at Oxford Magistrate’s Court of illegal subletting.

The offence began in November 2017 when a member of the family rented the Edmunds Road, Banbury property in good faith from Koczela, who assured them that she was the owner.

The residence is in fact the property of social landlord Sanctuary Housing.

Graeme Kane, Cherwell’s chief operating officer, said: “This conviction will leave people in no doubt that we will act to protect the district’s social housing stock for the people who really need it.

“The tenants are the real victims in this case. They had moved into the property in good faith and have had to endure considerable disruption through no fault of their own.

“I am pleased that we have been able to allocate a new home to them through the housing register.”

The defendant has now moved out of the country and did not appear in court.

The conviction was the result of joint work between Oxford City Council’s Oxford Investigation Service, Cherwell and Sanctuary Housing.

When the tenants were made aware that they were living in an illegally sublet property they were eager to do the right thing and promptly contacted the council and the police for advice.

They are expected to move into their new home in the coming fortnight.