19-year-old could lose Battersea council flat after starting fires

Liam Hynes caught on CCTV in Scholey House in Battersea

Liam Hynes caught on CCTV in Scholey House in Battersea

First published in News
Last updated
Wandsworth Guardian: Photograph of the Author by , Chief reporter

A 19-year-old has been jailed for starting fires in the block of council flats where he lives.

Liam Hynes, of Scholey House, York Road estate, Battersea, was sentenced to 12 months in prison by a judge at Kingston Crown Court on Friday.

Wandsworth Guardian: Wandsworth Councillor Paul Ellis

Councillor Paul Ellis said the council has zero tolerance to antisocial behaviour 

He pleaded guilty to two counts of arson after the council’s CCTV footage identified him as the arsonist.

The council is taking legal action to repossess his flat, arguing that his criminal behaviour constitutes a breach of the tenancy conditions.

Councillor Paul Ellis, the council’s housing spokesman, said: “These were mindless and unforgiveable acts by this foolish young man who put the lives of his neighbours in real danger.

“Fortunately the two fires were both small and quickly dealt with by the fire brigade but they could have had tragic consequences.

Wandsworth Guardian:

“I’m pleased to say that our CCTV footage played a decisive role in helping the police identify Mr Hynes and providing incontrovertible evidence of his guilt.

“As a consequence of his own actions, he will no longer enjoy the benefit of living in a council flat.

“We have an absolute zero tolerance of those who commit criminal acts or engage in antisocial behaviour on our housing estates. The vast majority of our tenants expect nothing less from us.”

Victims of antisocial behaviour in Wandsworth can get help from the council. Council tenants or leaseholders should call 020 8871 6829, people in private accommodation should call 020 8871 8894.

Comments (3)

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12:24pm Wed 30 Jul 14

janee says...

I don't in any way condone the dangerous behaviour of this young man but am puzzled about how he has become a tenant, given that WBC has so many on the housing waiting list. Are there children who will suffer as a result of his eviction? Did he get a tenancy as a result of health, mental or physical, conditions? Or did he just "inherit" the tenancy from parents. If the latter, fair enough to evict but, if another reason, mightn't the Council have a duty of care and is it possible that their cuts have made a situation worse?
I don't in any way condone the dangerous behaviour of this young man but am puzzled about how he has become a tenant, given that WBC has so many on the housing waiting list. Are there children who will suffer as a result of his eviction? Did he get a tenancy as a result of health, mental or physical, conditions? Or did he just "inherit" the tenancy from parents. If the latter, fair enough to evict but, if another reason, mightn't the Council have a duty of care and is it possible that their cuts have made a situation worse? janee
  • Score: 1

5:49pm Wed 30 Jul 14

buggsie says...

19 years old with his own council Flat ?? Then they try to burn it down.

All these folk bleating on about building more social housing when this is how it gets treated - I don't think so. Why should I pay full council tax, service charges etc, etc to keep these people in free housing.
19 years old with his own council Flat ?? Then they try to burn it down. All these folk bleating on about building more social housing when this is how it gets treated - I don't think so. Why should I pay full council tax, service charges etc, etc to keep these people in free housing. buggsie
  • Score: 1

5:57pm Fri 8 Aug 14

concernedofwandsworth says...

Anyone who gets evicted from council housing simply gets referred/passed on to a housing association. They're not homeless and are actually likely to end up in much better quality accommodation.

The housing associations put them up in nice new flats; typically the social rented properties (generally labelled 'affordable housing') which developers are legally required to provide within all plush new developments. So he'll probably end up in a swish new flat that a working person would have to pay £400 a week for.
Anyone who gets evicted from council housing simply gets referred/passed on to a housing association. They're not homeless and are actually likely to end up in much better quality accommodation. The housing associations put them up in nice new flats; typically the social rented properties (generally labelled 'affordable housing') which developers are legally required to provide within all plush new developments. So he'll probably end up in a swish new flat that a working person would have to pay £400 a week for. concernedofwandsworth
  • Score: 0

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