12:57PM, Tuesday 27 April 2021
Reading Magistrates' Court. Credit: Google
A Slough couple who abused and assaulted their neighbours over a building work dispute have lost a court appeal over community protection notices which were issued to them.
Sajid Shah and his wife Farhana Shah repeatedly verbally abused their neighbours in Court Crescent after they became upset over building work going on in the house next to their council property in October 2018.
The pair tried to interfere with the building work and received a written warning from the council and Thames Valley Police about their behaviour in July 2019.
Their anti-social behaviour included Mr Shah assaulting his neighbour who received treatment in hospital for injuries.
The warning letter did not stop their anti-social behaviour and in September 2019 each was served a community protection notice.
It stated their conduct had been unreasonable towards their neighbours through verbal abuse, threats of violence, and interfering with visitors to the property conducting lawful building work.
It stated the abuse had resulted in their neighbours being caused alarm, harassment and distress to them and the visitors to their home and they were intimidated, frightened and offended.
The notice required each to immediately stop all contact, including verbal and other communications, all threats of violence and all interference to the lawful building work.
Mr and Mrs Shah were entitled to appeal notices and did so although there was a delay due to the pandemic.
The hearing was held at Reading Magistrates’ Court on April 14 and 15 where the appeal was dismissed and Mr and Mrs Shah were ordered to pay £8,778 costs to the council for defending the case.
The magistrates heard evidence from the victim, the council’s neighbourhood tenancy team leader and Mr and Mrs Shah.
The council’s legal representative Alex Williams told magistrates: “Mr Shah was obsessed and angered by the boundary wall issue, and had verbally abused and physically assaulted his neighbour as a result.
“Mrs Shah had also verbally abused their neighbour and tried to interfere with the building work.”
Mr and Mrs Shah remain council tenants and their conduct is being closely monitored.
Liz Jones, group manger for localities and neighbourhoods, said: “The council will not hesitate to act when tenants act unreasonably in their neighbourhoods.
“Working with the police there are powers available under the Anti-Social Behaviour Crime and Policing Act.
“Recipients of such notices are legally able to appeal however, there could be costs incurred when appealing without good cause.
“People who are in receipt of such notices could also lose their entitlement to the council property.”
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