Maryland AG files suit against slumlord Kushner; rat infested properties

Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh filed suit against Jared Kushner over unfair or “deceptive practices and having rat infested units in and around Baltimore.

According to their complaint filed with the Consumer Protection Division, Office of the Attorney General, the AG alleges the Respondents,  Westminster Management and 25 other companies “ have victimized consumers, many of whom are financially vulnerable, at all stages of offering and leasing consumer realty. 2 Throughout the time that they have operated in Maryland, tens of thousands of consumers have come to the Respondents seeking safe, affordable housing for themselves and their families. The Respondents, in turn, have represented to consumers through their advertising and model apartments that that they will provide them with safe and well-maintained residential realty. Instead, the Respondents have rented apartments and townhomes to consumers that are distressed, shoddily maintained, and have conditions that can adversely impact consumers’ health and well being. Many consumers living in the Respondents’ properties have had to endure living in units that are infested by rodents and vermin, plagued with water leaks that have caused mold and other issues, and, at times, lacking in basic utilities. The Respondents are and have been on notice of the substandard conditions in their properties, because consumers have lodged thousands of complaints with the Respondents themselves, with city and county housing officials, and with other consumer agencies.

Read the complaint here:

Kushner’s CEO Laurent Morali said the company would fight the claims.  “We refuse to be extorted by an ambitious Attorney General who clearly cares more about scoring political points than fighting real crime and improving the lives of the people of Maryland,” he said in a statement to The Baltimore Sun. “We look forward to defending ourselves against these bogus allegations.”

Apparently, negotiations between the AG’s office and the slumlords have gone on for over two years resulting in absolutely nothing.  The state has not specified an exact dollar amount in damages they will seek but the total could easily swell into the millions.

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