Release Date: 07-Nov-2012
A judge has ordered a Mirfield woman convicted of drug dealing to leave her home in order to save her mother and young sibling from being evicted.
In October 2011, police found a large quantity of class B drugs (M-cat and cannabis) in the bedroom of Rachel Secker, then aged 17.
Miss Secker, who lived with her mother, Sharon Major, on the London Park estate in Mirfield, pleaded guilty to a charge of possession with intent to supply and was given a youth rehabilitation order.
Following the conviction, Kirklees Neighbourhood Housing (KNH) and Kirklees Council started legal action to evict the family from the estate.
However, at Huddersfield County Court on 2 November, they agreed to a postponed possession order against Ms Major, as long as her daughter does not live at, return or visit the family home for the next two years.
Ms Major, who represented herself throughout the trial, agreed to the order to save her family home for her younger child.
Miss Secker now must not visit or live at the family home until November 2014. If she does, the Council can take her mother back to court to evict her.
Christine Gummerson, KNH’s Head of Neighbourhood Services, said: “we are pleased with this result as it strikes a positive balance in terms of outcomes both for the family and for the wider community.
“When a tenant signs up for a council property they sign an agreement that they are responsible for the behavior of their family members and visitors. In this case, had Mrs Major not cooperated with us, we would have asked the court to evict her because of her daughter’s drug dealing. However, she did co operate with us and has ensured that her other child has a chance to have a stable life.
“I hope the court’s ruling shows that council tenancies come with responsibilities, and that there are consequences for not taking those responsibilities seriously.”
Councillor Cathy Scott, cabinet member for housing, said: “This is good news for the people of London Park, whose lives have been blighted by a few individuals intent on causing trouble.
"All the agencies involved are committed to working to improve the lives of families living on the estate, and we hope this result shows that by working together, we can take a stand against crime and antisocial behaviour.
This is the latest in a series of successful prosecutions of London Park residents. In August 2012, five members of a notorious gang were sentenced to in excess of 20 years for robberies, affray and drug dealing on the estate.