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Couple fined for using a fake garage door to disguise a residential property

At Leicester magistrates court, Herzallah and Almasri, of Enderby, Leicestershire, were each ordered to pay a £770 fine, legal costs of £1,252 and a £77 victim surcharge.
The Guardian

A couple, who had disguised housing on their property with a fake garage door, has been fined by Leicester Magistrates Court. The case was brought about by the Blaby district council after they were notified about unauthorized work being carried out at the couple’s home and discovered the hoax garage.

The couple, Reeta Herzallah and Hamdi Almasri, had wanted to bypass planning regulations. In 2007, the duo had been granted permission to develop the property under the condition that car-parking facilities, including the now converted garage, remain permanently available. Beyond the illegal living quarters, the couple had also undertook illegal works within the highway and created an unauthorized vehicle access onto the busy B4114 dual carriageway.

Beyond the legal costs, the court has also ordered that the garage be restored to its former use. Blaby district councillor Sheila Scott spoke of the case, sending a strong warning. “The message from this case is clear. If you breach planning regulations and ignore us, we will not just go away” she said.

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