Smooth squatter victimizes Queens landlord

August 23, 2011 05:40PM

A man has settled in as a squatter in a Woodside, Queens apartment, living rent-free since April, and according to the New York Post, he’s not exactly what you’d expect of a squatter — rather he is a smooth-talking waiter and bartender at the Prime House steakhouse at 381 Park Avenue South near 27th Street named Brian Wiley.

Tibor Karakas, the landlord of the three-family home at 33-22 58th Street, sued Wiley alleging the squatter has cost him $1,000 in legal fees during the eviction process and $6,400 in four months of unpaid rent for the two-bedroom apartment.

Wiley began living in the apartment earlier this year when the female tenant occupying the home took him on as a roommate. Shortly thereafter he stopped paying rent and his half of the bills, the roommate said. When her lease expired at the end of April, she turned over her keys but Wiley stayed, first promising to clear out and then to sign a lease. Ultimately he did neither and Karakas tried to change the locks. But Wiley called the police, who ordered Karakas to give Wiley the keys and take the case to Housing Court.

“I think he goes from apartment to apartment doing this,” Karakas said. “He knows the law. He knows what he’s doing. He knows it will take me six months to get him out.” [Post]