Friday, December 07, 2012

District Judge Alderson sweeps Declan's Circuit Court Appeal aside and grants live-in landlady Possession Order

Most recently in the blog "Live-in landlady writes she is physically removing us from our flat on 14 December, no bailiffs required", I published Declan's appeal against Deputy District Judge Peart's order granting our live-in landlady, human rights activist Belinda McKenzie, accelerated possession of our flat with effect from 1 November. Circuit Judge Cryan sent the case back to the District Court for hearing this morning. Declan had prepared a statement to read at the commencement of the hearing, but District Judge Alderson didn't want to know anything about it. Instead, he accepted that Belinda's claim for an accelerated possession order didn't contain the right paperwork but, because he had the correct paperwork in Declan's appeal bundle, granted Belinda accelerated possession of our flat. I am not kidding!

We have to vacate our flat within 14 days. And we know Declan would not win one extra day by seeking permission to appeal, which would simply be refused. At least DJ Alderson told Belinda that for the remainder of our time in her house she is bound by her recent undertaking to the Court not to harass us, meaning that if she carries out her threat to have us illegally evicted next Friday, she is facing prison for contempt of court. If our attempts to find alternative accommodation continue to be blocked, Belinda can get a bailiff's warrant on or after 27 December, she was further informed by the Judge. So much for this opening statement to the court (paras 4-7 deal with the blockade that is preventing us from moving):


Why I am looking for the Possession Order to be set aside, and not varied

1. As stated in my notice of appeal, Ms Belinda McKenzie is not entitled to a court order for accelerated possession due to her having let the flat using a written tenancy agreement that does not benefit from the accelerated possession procedure, not to mention supplying the court with incorrect paperwork.

2. As explained to Ms McKenzie in section 3 of her claim form, to avail of the accelerated procedure the first tenancy agreement must have been for a fixed term of not less than six months, with no power for the landlord to end the tenancy earlier than six months after it began. Ms McKenzie entered into the first of four three-month tenancy agreements with my wife and me on 14 July 2009 (the day after we met), which was terminable by one month’s notice on either side. Moreover, Ms McKenzie received rent from 14 July 2009 under Haringey Council’s Housing Benefit scheme.

3. Deputy District Judge Peart granted Ms McKenzie a possession order with effect from 1 November. Since that date my wife and I have been subjected to intimidation, harassment, terrorization, and false allegations of criminal conduct, notwithstanding that Ms McKenzie signed an undertaking with the Court on 21 August 2012 not to harass us for a period of one year following her removal of our flat door on 27 July. On 25 November, Ms McKenzie went so far as to write that next week, on 14 December, members of her household will physically evict us and remove our personal effects from the property. A copy of this email, which Ms McKenzie copied to two guests currently staying in rooms below us, is attached to this statement.

4. On 20 July 2012, I lodged a complaint with the United Nations against the United Kingdom concerning unlawful directed surveillance and interception of our communications over a period dating back to September 2003, when my wife and I came to England to run a network of those abused by church, now a registered company called Network for Church Monitoring at I have brought to the court a folder containing compelling evidence that we are being blocked from finding a flat.

5. On 31 October 2012, I received £3000 ($5000) from a benefactor in America. Since that date, I have made contact with over 60 letting agents by email, phone and in person and only one has come through with a landlord who accepts DSS/Housing Benefit on a one bedroom flat. I called in upon this letting agent last week. The property advisor told me that there would be no tenancy agreement and then made a phone call to his handyman to ask him to go to a particular property and throw the tenant's belongings to the street and change the locks so he couldn't re-enter the house. It is surely not unreasonable to assume that this sort of behaviour was the product of surveillance.

6. This block is not difficult to maintain on a one bedroom flat. It has been explained to me that there is a "perfect storm" taking place in the property market in London due to Government cuts to social welfare benefits and a huge demand for rental properties, resulting in people on DSS/Housing Benefit being at a serious disadvantage. Haringey Council has also informed me that even if I look for emergency accommodation on the day we are evicted from our flat, we will not be given help of any description because we do not have children or suffer from a disability.

7. I respectfully request that DDJ Peart’s order of 18 October 2012 be set aside and Ms McKenzie ordered to re-apply for a possession order using the correct procedure. As stated in my appeal, there is a very real prospect of a grant being awarded to us in the New Year. In the interim, it is also not inconceivable that the block referred to in paragraph 4 above could be lifted, or at least relaxed, to enable us to find alternative accommodation.

8. I also request that the Court please advise Ms McKenzie that she needs a bailiff’s warrant to evict us from our flat. On 8 November 2012, PC 147YR of Hornsey Police Station told me that if Ms McKenzie carries out her threat to have us evicted by members of her household on 14 December, the police will be powerless to act, even if called to the scene. In a letter dated 11 October 2012, the Metropolitan Police stated that they did not record Ms McKenzie’s removal of the door to our flat as a criminal offence because Ms McKenzie alleged that I had erected the door myself, which I did not. We have no doubt that we have good reason to take Ms McKenzie’s threat seriously.

9. It is our strong belief that DDJ Peart never had sight of my defence when he made his order. No reasonable judge would have granted costs assessed at £175 to Ms McKenzie, especially since she had not asked for her costs to be paid, unless he was under the impression that no defence had been filed. This is not to mention that I had declared total means amounting to £347.54 in my defence form. Permission to appeal is respectfully sought if DDJ Peart’s order be not set aside.

MI5 whistleblower David Shayler lived for a couple of years in one of the rooms below us until 2007. It is indeed unfortunate that Shayler then declared that he was the Messiah, became a squatter, and was subsequently ridiculed in the press for changing his name to Delores Kane. A New Statesman article dated 11 September 2006 featuring Shayler and Belinda gives no indication that he believed he was the Messiah at that time; whilst a Daily Mail interview with Shayler explicitly shows he believed himself to be Jesus by June 2007.
The Esquire article below is mentioned in a Guardian article dated 27 March 2012. It is an eye-opener, highlighting the monitoring and surveillance that Shayler had to live with back in 2000, and the contradictory briefings and slanders that were coming out of the British establishment and the media. The author, Dr Eamonn O'Neill, now a lecturer in journalism at Strathclyde University, also intelligently tries to address the motivations of a whistleblower.

BBC PANORAMA: The David Shayler Affair (August 1998)

According to BBC Panorama, Shayler "caused the biggest crisis of official secrecy since the spy catcher affair". In 2002, he was jailed for seven weeks for breaking the Official Secrets Act.