Landlord parades sandwich board up and down high street in protest against agent

An agent is set to be featured on television tomorrow, with a claim that the firm owes a landlord £20,000. The furious landlord walked up and down the local high street with a sandwich board, warning others against the agent.

The programme, Channel 5’s Nightmare Tenants, Slum Landlords, is set to show how one allegedly rogue operator gives good letting agents a bad name.

However, the agent concerned has strenously denied any wrongdoing, and says that no money is owed to the landlord.

According to evictions specialist Landlord Action, the agent stopped handing rent over to the landlord, Margaret Wilson, who owns two rental properties in Oxfordshire.

According to Landlord Action, two years ago she handed their management to letting agent Carl Afilaka, of Christopher Stanley Lettings, of Bicester, Oxfordshire.

Landlord Action said: “Things went well for the first year but then 12 months ago, despite the tenants regularly paying the rent to the agent, Mr Afilaka stopped paying Margaret the rent owed to her. Now Margaret is out of pocket to the tune of £20,000.

“A quick view of Christopher Stanley Lettings Ltd on All Agents reveals that Mrs Wilson is not the first person to be defrauded by this man, with claims of deposits not registered with a tenancy deposit scheme, not returning deposits, non-payment to contractors and violent behaviour.

“At her wits end, Margaret tried everything to get the agent to pay up; she contacted Trading Standards and even called the police, with no success. After months of desperate phone calls and emails to the agent without response, Margaret contacted Landlord Action’s debt recovery department.

“With founder Paul Shamplina at her side ready to serve a letter before action for the outstanding monies, Margaret finally gets to confront Carl Afilaka face to face.”

Shamplina said: “For a number of years, our debt recovery department has been taking legal action for landlords against rogue agents that withhold rent owed to landlords for their own business and cashflow purposes.

“It infuriates me that any agent is able to get away with this whilst causing so much distress to a landlord. It can often discourage them from using a good reputable letting agents in the future.”

But a spokesperson for Christopher Stanley told Eye: “We have furnished Mrs Wilson with all rental statements, outlining the payments made to her. We cannot find any outstanding payments that she is owed.

“As far as the tenants deposits are concerned, this was registered with the tenancy deposit scheme, they were then subsequently transferred to Margaret Wilson’s account, and she has acknowledged receipt of these.

“We have always maintained, and still do maintain that if we could find that we owe her any money, we would ensure that it is paid to her, but as previously mentioned, this is not the case.

“We manage over 200 properties across Oxfordshire, and 99% of our clients are happy with the service they receive from us.”

allAgents yesterday ranked Christopher Stanley Lettings 13,886 out of 14,210 agents in the UK.

The programme airs tomorrow on Channel 5 at 9pm.

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2 Comments

  1. NewsBoy

    Looks like a case of he said, she said, but I’m sure it will make a good television programme as long as the facts don’t get in the way of a good story!

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  2. matticulas

    If you do a quick search on companies house for Carl Afilaka or Tunde Afilaka or Olatunde Afilaka (all his aliases) and you’ll see find out how many companies he’s run and abandoned or dissolves. He did to me what he did to Margaret but I’m only several thousand down. I could sue his company like others before me have done to his previous companies but he’d just dissolves the company. He’s a fraudster who hides behind a vail of incorporation. He even registers companies with made up postal addresses to stop people finding him but now it’s so public where he is I’m sure karma will catch him up sooner or later.

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