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Footballer landlord to repay tenants £8,500 over unlicensed properties

Former professional footballer Dexter Blackstock has also been fined £24,000 for nine offences in relations to the properties.

Nigel Lewis

dexter landlord

Former professional footballer and landlord Dexter Blackstock has been ordered to pay back tenants’ Housing Benefit after failing to licence his properties.

Blackstock, from Papplewick in Nottinghamshire, had been convicted in 2019 of nine offences of failing to licence properties under Nottingham City Council’s selective licensing scheme, failing to licence two properties under its additional licensing scheme and one other offence under the mandatory licensing scheme.

He was fined £24,000, along with £1,100 costs and a victim surcharge of £170.

Rent repayment order

The council then applied for a Rent Repayment Order for the two properties where Housing Benefit had been paid while the properties were unlicensed. The ex-QPR and Nottingham Forest striker must now repay £8,592 after a First-tier Tribunal agreed to the order.

Both tenants and local authorities can ask a landlord for up to 12 months’ rent or for benefits to be repaid, when a landlord is convicted of operating without a licence.

Councillor Linda Woodings, the council’s portfolio holder for planning, housing and heritage, says it has been a long and complex case for its safer housing team, from investigations to prosecution.

She adds: “Housing Benefit is paid out from the council to support residents in paying their rent. Following this conviction, we had to recuperate the money that Mr Blackstock was not entitled to. This could have all been avoided if Mr Blackstock licensed his properties or engaged and worked with us. However, when this doesn’t happen we will always take the strongest action possible to help improve the standards of rented properties.”

Blackstock is former striker who played for Southampton, QPR and Nottingham Forest during the early to mid-noughties.

February 19, 2021

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