Landlord Sam Suzuki was ordered to jail for civil contempt on Thursday by the Bronx Housing Court for failing to make necessary repairs at a 49-unit apartment building he owns in the borough.
The court said “incarceration shall continue until respondents comply with” an order that was issued last July to repair maintenance code violations issued by the city Housing Preservation and Development. The five-story building, located at 1585 East 172nd Street, has 691 open violations. Apartments in the building have collapsing ceilings, buckled floors and shedding lead painted walls.
“As Housing Court Judge Jerald Klein found, Mr. Suzuki's conduct displayed a flagrant disregard for and defiance of the Court's authority and his failure to correct the immediately hazardous and hazardous conditions prejudiced the tenants' rights and HPD's right to enforce housing standards in order to preserve decent and safe housing accommodations,” said HPD Commissioner Rafael Cestero, in a statement. “It is regrettable that this has come to this pass, but the fact remains, no tenant should ever have to endure these conditions.”