The Real Deal New York

Attorney general puts “tenant relocator” out of business

Schneiderman claims Michel Pimienta harassed residents of rent-stablized apartments

October 27, 2014 11:25AM

Eric Schneiderman and Michel Pimienta (inset)

Eric Schneiderman (Inset: Michel Pimienta)

In an effort to eradicate so-called “tenant relocators,” Attorney General Eric Schneiderman reached the first agreement in his effort to end the practice of booting long-term residents out of their rent stabilized units.

Michel Pimienta — who, among other things, allegedly threatened tenants with eviction for a decade and accused them of illegal subletting — will have to stop the relocation efforts. As part of his agreement with the AG, Pimienta will also pay a $40,000 fine.

“This agreement will help ensure that lawful tenants are not harassed or pressured into giving up their homes by an unlicensed and unscrupulous tenant relocator,” Schneiderman said, according to the New York Daily News.

According to the Attorney General, tenant relocators like Pimienta are becoming more common in neighborhoods with a high percentage of rent-stabilized units where landlords are looking to gentrify. Pimienta was allegedly active in a number of neighborhoods,  including the Lower East Side and Gowanus. He also allegedly operated illegally without the required brokers license in more than 60 rent-regulated buildings across the city.

Pimienta himself lives in a Midtown high-rise with luxurious amenities, the newspaper reported. He neither admitted nor denied any wrongdoing in the settlement with Schneiderman.[NYDN] — Claire Moses

  • abanjofacelift

    I applaud the Attorney General for going after Pimienta. His ruthless and strong-armed tactics are both illegal and disturbing. He’s been pressuring tenants in buildings undergoing construction to accept buyout offers while continually representing that their living conditions are unsafe; ironically, he’s actually being honest on the latter point – living conditions are unsafe! This is yet another example of the ways in which Samy Mahfar and his minions are pushing out rent-stabilized tenants to make way for their overpriced “luxury” apartments. Amazing that Mahfar’s own hired gun is telling tenants that conditions in the building are unsafe!

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    • Jack Royal

      The apartments are only “overpriced” because of stabilized apartments constraining supply. Maybe if you would get a job instead of spending all day posting complaints about some man trying to earn a living, you could afford a nice luxury apartment.

  • Bullied and Damaged by Rent Re

    “jiageya”

  • notrichenoughtomatter

    Such a joke. Pimienta isn’t out of business. Far from it. He’s currently doing exactly what he agreed not to do – practicing his dirty tricks for several building on the LES and thumbing his nose at the Attorney General. This was just a publicity stunt by the AG.

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