We have been checking in regularly on Edinburgh’s most notorious criminal landlord, Mark Fortune, and have an update from the Council on the current legal situation. It seems that Fortune’s appeal will fail this month, and he will finally be banned.
Many of you will know that EPTAG was created by tenants of his, and we have been campaigning for decisive action against him for several years now. We are understandably very happy to hear that this is finally happening.
Councillor Gavin Barrie, head of the committee that regulates landlords in Edinburgh, tells us that:
The Council has attempted, but failed to serve papers on Mr Fortune in France re his appeal about having his landlord registration revoked. The Sheriff has accepted that the Council has done everything it can to serve these papers and the last chance to notify Mr Fortune will take place by posting a notice on the wall of the Sheriff Court.
We do not expect him to respond and his appeal against being banned as a Landlord will fail and the Council will be free to take action at his properties. The Council are currently trying to engage with residents in his properties but they appear to be very well briefed not to engage with Council Officers. Some evidence of wrongdoing is being offered by tenants who are quitting the properties of their own volition but unhelpfully these tenants are leaving the country which makes their evidence difficult to use.
Once the appeal has officially failed, around the end of the month, the Council will be able to speak to tenants in the sound knowledge that any hold Mr Fortune had over them will be finished. Where evidence can be gathered and substantiated the Council will take further action against Mark Fortune via the police and Procurator Fiscals Office.
So it sounds like the slow wheels of justice are finally catching up with Mr Fortune, and we look forward to him being unable to rent out property to tenants in the near future. A big thanks to the Council for finally getting this done.
If you have the misfortune to be one of his tenants, don’t be afraid to get in touch with the Council, they will support you should you wish to come forward to get help, or to give evidence of his malpractice.