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South Devon landlord carried out illegal safety checks

A landlord from Torquay illegally carried out annual gas safety checks at his properties despite not being a registered gas engineer, a court has heard.

Raymond Williams, of Armada Crescent, Torquay, potentially put his tenants’ lives at risk by carrying out the statutory safety checks himself between April 2013 and October 2014.

He also fraudulently filled out landlord’s gas safety documents using a fake Gas Safe Register number.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuted Mr Williams at Torquay Magistrates’ Court on 19 March after his work was investigated following a complaint from one of his tenants.

The court heard that Mr Williams carried out his own safety checks at five properties in Torquay and one in Newton Abbott.

The checks should only have been carried out by a registered Gas Safe engineer to ensure the highest standards were met.

Mr Williams pleaded guilty to four breaches of gas safety legislation, and was fined a total of £12,000 and ordered to pay £418 in costs.

HSE inspector Simon Jones said: “Mr Williams should never have carried out any gas safety checks as he was neither competent nor registered to do so. He then compounded these offences by fraudulently filling out gas safety documents.

“Landlords must ensure checks are carried out by registered Gas Safe engineers who are independent and competent to do the work.

“Such checks are vital to protect tenants from death or injury caused by potentially dangerous gas appliances.”

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