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Not Even Running a Brothel Could Get Someone Evicted in New York

By: Don Kaplan

March 11th, 2012

Not even running a brothel is enough to remove someone from New York’s coveted — and heavily protected — rent-stabilized and rent-controlled apartments.

If the landlord who owns the $600-a-month apartment on East 78th Street wanted to boot alleged madam Anna Gristina, he’d face an uphill climb. Many judges would not evict Gristina unless she’s been convicted, experts say.

“Even with the best case in the world, it would take me at least three months to evict someone and in most cases much more time,” said real-estate lawyer Adam Leitman Bailey.

The issue is so contentious that the US Supreme Court is considering hearing a case on the issue. James Harmon, who owns an Upper West Side brownstone, sued to evict a $1,000-a-month rent regulated tenant, even though she owns a home in the Hamptons. Lower courts have found in her favor.


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