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Landlords fined 405 times for letting to migrants in 'hostile environment' policy

LANDLORDS have received 405 fines over the last two years for leasing property to people classed as illegal immigrants, new figures show.

The Immigration Act 2016 requires landlords to confirm that tenants have the “right to rent” in Britain by taking copies of documents.

The scheme was introduced as part of the government’s plan to foster a “hostile environment” for people in the country without proper documentation.

Fines of up to £3,000 per tenant can be issued, while those who knowingly lease a property could face criminal proceedings and up to five years in prison.

The legislation denies access to work, accommodation and other services to people without immigration documents, aiming to push them “voluntarily” out of the country.

The National Landlords Association (NLA) has called on Home Secretary Sajid Javid to review the scheme.

Chris Norris of NLA said the figures show landlords are “more aware of their responsibilities” but added that they are “neither immigration experts nor border agents.”

“The scheme has placed an additional cost on an already pressurised sector, while the excessive checks and lack of monitoring may have had harmful consequences for would-be and vulnerable tenants,” he said.

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