herald

Friday 13 December 2019

Marissa's landlord brother told to pay €22k in rental row

Cocoa Brown founder Marissa Carter
Cocoa Brown founder Marissa Carter

A landlord who was previously brought up in court for overcrowding a five-bedroom property with up to 70 people has been ordered to pay more than €22,000 in rent arrears and damages.

Dubliner Christian Carter, who is the younger brother of Cocoa Brown founder Marissa Carter, was ordered by the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) to pay €16,000 in rent arrears for a property in Stillorgan Heath.

He was also ordered by the RTB to pay €6,225 in damages due to the condition the property was left in.

The landlord of the house had been renting the property to Mr Carter, who in turn sublet it to a number of foreign nationals.

Complaints

Following complaints from neighbours about several public order incidents outside the house, the landlord sought to end the rental agreement with Mr Carter and took a case with the RTB to retrieve outstanding rent.

The landlord, who lives outside Ireland, said she would inspect the property when she was in Dublin but was never aware how many people were living in the four-bedroom house.

"Sometimes when I came to inspect my house some bedroom doors were locked, so I didn't know who was living there. I then Googled his name and came across an article about him overcrowding houses," the landlord told the Herald.

"I came into contact with him after I advertised the property and an auctioneer put me in touch with him and said he would handle the rental for me."

The landlord claims she has not yet received the outstanding rent.

The RTB adjudication report states there was damage to the windows and blinds in the house and a lot of rubbish left on the property.

Christian at a previous court date wearing a motorcyle helmet
Christian at a previous court date wearing a motorcyle helmet

Mr Carter was previously brought before Dublin Circuit Civil Court after a Herald investigation exposed how he was overcrowding a house in Cabinteely with up to 70 people.

Flammable

Following our story, Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council carried out an inspection and found that almost every room they could obtain access to had been filled with either double-beds or bunk beds, the court heard.

Loose electrical cord providing power to a washing machine, and two tumble dryers at the top of a stairs leading to the basement had to be avoided.

In a boiler room, there were no smoke or heat detectors and flammable materials were scattered about.

One room in the basement contained 11 bunk beds and a second room contained five bunk beds, the court also heard.

Mr Carter and the owner of the property, a Mr Richard Stanley, were ordered to pay the council's legal costs of up to €60,000.

A council official said at the time of writing that it was still working to retrieve "the majority" of these costs more than two years later.

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