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Suspended prison sentence for Plymouth landlord who endangered tenants

9 December 2016

The landlord of a property in Plymouth risked the lives of his tenants and their young family by not undertaking annual safety checks on gas appliances in the property and by undertaking gaswork which was found to be dangerous.

Paul Perry was prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) at Plymouth Crown Court today following an investigation.

HSE began inquiries when a registered gas engineer went to a tenanted property on St Levan Road, Plymouth in September 2015 to undertake a safety check but found a gas leak on a gas pipe and reported the incident to HSE.

During the investigation it became apparent that the tenant had asked Paul Perry for a copy of the landlord’s gas safety certificate earlier in 2015 but Paul Perry had failed to produce any such document.

During the investigation it emerged that Paul Perry had not had a gas safety check done at his tenanted property for at least 7 years despite it being a legal requirement to have the gas safety check undertaken every year to ensure the safety of tenants.

It also emerged that Paul Perry had undertaken work on the gas pipe to the cooker at the property despite the fact that he had no training in gaswork and was not registered to undertake any gaswork. The work that he undertook resulted in a gas leak at the property.

Paul Perry of Clarence Place, Morice Town, Plymouth pleaded guilty to two breaches of gas safety regulations. He was sentenced to 10 months in prison, suspended for 15 months, and ordered to pay costs of £4,000.

HSE Inspector, Simon Jones, speaking after the hearing, said:

“Landlords have a legal duty to carry out annual gas safety checks which are there to protect their tenants from death or injury.

“In this case, Mr Perry ignored a request from his tenant to carry out the checks and to provide a copy of the safety record.

“He compounded the matter by undertaking gaswork himself which he was neither trained nor registered to undertake and which resulted in a gas leak which could have caused a fatal gas explosion”

Further information about landlords’ responsibilities for gas supply can be found on the HSE website at


Notes to editors:

  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. It aims to reduce work-related death, injury and ill health. It does so through research, information and advice, promoting training; new or revised regulations and codes of practice, and working with local authority partners by inspection, investigation and enforcement.[1]
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: link to external website[2]
  3. HSE news releases are available at


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