Court hands rogue landlord landmark deterrent fire fine
Bijan Keshmiri was found guilty of 28 offences at four self-contained flats on Rosemary Lane and a second property that had been converted into two self-contained flats on Spa Buildings.
The penalty is thought to be one of the largest fines ever given to an individual landlord in Britain. The prosecution was brought by the City of Lincoln Council.
Lincoln Magistrates' Court was told the first building on Rosemary Lane, which Keshmiri used to house 12 tenants, had broken smoke detectors, inappropriate locks on fire exits, poorly made repairs that increased the spread of fire, and a lack of fire separation and protection between flats.
One of the flats had a risk of electrocution from a light, while in another a hot water supply tank was not sealed with a lid, exposing occupants to the risk of vermin, insects and diseases such as legionella.
The communal areas and stairwell had no emergency lighting and the standard lighting throughout the ground, first and second-floor staircases and landings did not work when tested.
At the second property, where six people lived, fire exit doors were sealed shut, there were no smoke alarms in the ground floor flat and no fire blanket in the kitchen. Mould was rife in the property.
In summing up the sentencing, the judge told Keshmiri: "Given your history, your portfolio of properties and the length of the time that you have managed them, this is of the upmost seriousness. The offences were so serious that the fine should act as deterrent to other rogue landlords."