Saturday, 31 January 2015

Eviction threat as rioter sentenced to 11 months

The mother of a convicted rioter will have to plead her case against eviction after her son was sentenced to 11 months in a young offender’s institute.

Daniel Sartain-Clarke, 18, admitted burglary after he was found in the stock-room of a Curry’s electrical shop during the peak of last summer’s disturbances.

Passing sentence at Inner London Crown Court today, Judge Ian Darling praised him as an ‘exceptional young man’ who is a committed Christian and aid worker.

He said: ‘Perhaps of all the cases I have seen arising from this action, yours is the most tragic.’

Mr Sartain-Clarke hit the headlines last year when Wandsworth Council issued his mother, Maite de la Calva, with a Notice Seeking Possession before the teen was convicted.

The authority said his actions breached the tenancy agreement his mother signed and meant he, his mother and 8-year-old sister could be evicted from their home.

A spokesman said today: ‘We note the sentence handed down this afternoon by the judge following the admission from Mr Sartain-Clarke of his involvement in the looting of local shops that occurred during August’s violent disturbances. 

‘His actions that night were a clear and unequivocal breach of our tenancy conditions and as a result we will now be moving on to the next stage of the legal process.’

Tony Belton, a Labour councillor in Wandsworth, said the council was likely to proceed with eviction.

He said: ‘I have been completely against this right from the beginning. Given their stance, the council will proceed with eviction. Whether the county court judge will let it go through is another matter.

‘How you can evict someone who isn’t involved at all I can’t comprehend.’

Readers' comments (19)

  • Jimmy Cricket

    Peter - but you are now in the real world with us 'civvies'. A committed christian he ain't - theft. And convicted criminal. Tough.

    However HE has been punished for HIS actions. Why punish his mother and 8 year old sister? I'm assuming they will become intentionally homeless if the court rules in the council's favour. Personally I can't see the court awarding a possession order given the circumstances. They'll probably suspend it - a good solicitor will sort that out.

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  • Peter Wicks

    A Christian I ain't, but a committed Atheist I am,plus a Humanist for many years who will walk that final mile to help a fellow being who needs help.There are many unbiased source of news and information in this world...which includes Inside Housing as Rick pointed out....but reading a British newspaper can seriously damage weak minded people who are so easily influenced by all they read in ultra right wing my blog@

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  • He's over 18 and therefore responsible for his own actions and if the council wanted to make an agreement with him as an adult, they should have done so. It's no good holding his mother and little sister accountable any more than it would be if he were say, her husband. Would the council evict a wife and children through the actions of her husband? There is such a thing as Common Law upon which all legislation (which is not law) is supposed to be based. In any event, what the council are proposing is unlawful.

    All this besides the fact that it was the Police who caused the riots and the Police who allowed them to flourish. But you can't blame the cops, they're only following orders. That's the problem, they're supposed to be preserving the peace and under oath, we, the public. Shooting the public to death, ignoring bereaved relatives and watching the inevitable results is not what we pay the police to do.

    Yet security forces are paid by the corporation of london to enforce a different agenda. Any 'crime' against a corporate property is very serious indeed but when a cop kills a member of the public and then snows the coverage with exaggerated media about the 'riots', we're supposed to just nod along and call for more armed police in the name of 'security'.

    Well, some of us are awake and see what's at stake here.

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  • Melvin Bone

    'it was the Police who caused the riots'...

    Well that riddle is solved then.

    Should they let everyone go now who commited theft, burglary, assault and arson as 'it was the Police who caused the riots'?

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  • One of the major factors in encouraging reoffending is lack of housing. By evicting these people it satisfies the instinctive moral indignation against anyone convicted during the riots. However it damages not only the boy - who according to the judge has much to recommend him; but it harms his family, it harms the council and it harms society as a whole. This policy - if followed in other cases (I'm assuming the council applies the same rules to other less high profile incidents) - will only serve to push up reoffending rates in general - at a direct cost to us all.
    The boy committed a crime, for which a judge has deemed the penalty 11 months and that should be sufficient. Referring to those to who have quoted the Bible on here - yes indeed it does say thou shalt not steel, but I believe there's also quite a bit about forgiveness. Mind you it also suggests death for working on a Sunday and has a bit with a talking snake, so perhaps we might want to reconsider our sources.

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  • It's a difficult one, if you don't enforce tenancies where it states the tenant is responsible for the actions of those residing in the home and visitors to it, at what point does the tenancy cease to become worthwhile?

    There's many that will argue that HB difficulties, no matter how long they go on for or who's responsible for the delay should prevent eviction. There's those that would argue that there's mitigating reasons why someone shouldn't be expected to maintain their gardens, etc.

    All tenancy conditions are clearly set out when someone signs up to a property, to complain about them when said conditions are breached and proceedings commenced is perhaps understandable, but to not enforce sends out a dangerous message. Judges currently have the discretion, but my concern is in light of the advice given ref sentencing for the riots they are unlikely to find a sympathetic judge.....

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  • Rick Campbell

    "... and has a bit with a talking snake, so perhaps we might want to reconsider our sources. "

    Just the one talking snake then -- this government has a plethora of them.

    Those less charitable than me could perhaps consider that IH threads have there fair share of them.

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  • Joe Halewood

    A key issue in this particular case (aside from LB Wandsworth wanting to be first which is the primary motive in my view) is the council wanting to 'make an example.'

    The comparison and context of a famous TV chef AWT being a private tenant, actually stealing goods unlike DSC, doing so on a number of occasions (repeat offender) yet given a slap on the wrists by the courts and not having to see his family be subjected to eviction proceedings is a stark one.

    One of the earlier news release on DSC stated he went to Currys as his girlfriend was there and scared. She pleaded guilty to stealing and received a non-custodial sentence, he was not in possession of any goods we are told yet received a custodial sentence. Another stark contrast.

    LBW - who were so confident they will secure an eviction on this they issued a press release before he was even charged!! - included other grounds in the later Notice (arrears) we are informed. So much for their repeated public outbursts of confidence.

    I state the above as this case has so much more to reveal and because the general tone appears on here that LBW will secure an outright eviction. I doubt that will happen and if it does Im pretty sure it will be appealed to a higher court. LBW are throwing bucketloads of money at winning hearts and minds over this one case, they will spend far far more of public money on the legal case. - all for the sake of making an example and making its leader Ravi Govindia have a higher political profile.

    One quick final point to Harry Lime above - tenancy conditions also have to be legally fair too and something that LBW will realise when I suspect their tenancy clause comes under legal scrutiny. Though I have no doubt theyve already written the press release and briefed the DM and others just how unfair this is!!

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  • Melvin Bone

    Joe. 'Daniel Sartain-Clarke, 18, admitted burglary'.

    He admitted it. He did not contest it. Therefore he is guilty.

    The fat chef was not charged with burglary as far as I'm aware...

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