LETTING & ESTATE AGENT

Cambridge landlord fined for harassment

Cambridge landlord fined for harassment

A landlord who harassed the American tenants of a house she owned has been order to pay a total of £4,500.

Rosemary Hill, 74, of Mildenhall, denied harassment but was found guilty by a jury at Ipswich Crown Court.

The Cambridge News reports how an American family moved into a property in Long Road, Feltwell owned by Hill. They claim they were then bombarded with increasingly "vitriolic and personal" comments in emails and phone calls from Hill between October 2012 and June 2013.

Terri and Dwayne Scott, both US citizens, said that within a matter of weeks of moving into the house, their relationship with Hill began to deteriorate when they asked for defects with the property to be fixed.

During the trial the prosecution said that Hill may have been trying to hound the couple and their four children out of the property because she had other potential tenants willing to pay a higher rent lined up.

Mrs Scott said that as correspondence between them progressed, Hill's tone became increasingly “terse, personal and offensive”. Hill had accused the family of failing to look after her property, she said. Hill also contacted Sgt Scott’s senior office at RAF Mildenhall to discuss what she said were problems with the tenancy.

The jury were given details of an email said to have been sent by Hill to the base commander at RAF Mildenhall saying she wanted to remove the Scott family from her property and which she concluded with: "Americans cannot and will not come into my country, wreak havoc and leave with nothing happening."

Hill declined to give evidence and did not call any defence witnesses during the trial. She was cleared of an alternative offence of racially aggravated harassment.

At the trial recorder David Pugh, sitting at Norwich Crown Court, told Hill she must pay a £2,000 fine and contribute £2,500 towards the cost of the prosecution. He also granted a restraining order which will remain in force for 10 years and prohibits Hill from engaging in further harassment.