After the riots – Wandsworth council to evict innocent family
26 October 2011
Today Liberty announced that they will represent the family that has been threatened with eviction by Wandsworth council. The council has said that if Maite de la Calva’s son is convicted of a crime committed during the riots, they will evict both her and her young daughter – neither Ms de la Calva nor her daughter is accused of any wrongdoing.
Ms de la Calva, a committed Christian, has lived in the area for over five years and is described as a credit to her housing estate by neighbours. The epitome of the ‘Big Society’, she spends the little free time she has volunteering with a youth charity and working with victims of domestic violence.
Emma Norton, Liberty’s lawyer representing Maite de la Calva, said:
“Wandsworth Council’s threats to make an innocent family homeless are as cynical as they are heartless. Their attempt to be the first council to evict tenants following the riots is shameless self-promotion. Ms de la Calva has committed no crime and if she lived in a mortgaged house she would not face such bullying. Whether in a mansion or a flat everyone should be equal before the law.”
Ms de la Calva was served with a Notice of Seeking Possession on 12 August 2011 stating that she was likely to be in breach her tenancy agreement. It said that should her son be convicted of an offence the council would apply for an order for possession, evicting her from the property.
Contact: Liberty’s press office on 020 7378 3656 or 07973 831128
NOTES TO EDITORS:
1. There is a court order in place preventing photographic identification of Ms de la Calva’s daughter. In addition we ask that the young girl is not named. Thank you for your co-operation.
2. It is one of the standard terms of a Wandsworth tenancy agreement that the tenant, lodgers, friends, relatives, visitors and any other person living at the property refrain from doing anything which interferes with the “convenience” of other people living in Wandsworth. The Housing Act 1985 also suggests a basis for eviction where the tenant or a person living in or visiting her household has been convicted of an indictable offence.