Rockland County to sue landlords who rent out space where prostitution takes place under ‘public nuisance’ laws

Rockland County is cracking down on prostitution by suing landlords who rent out space where prostitution takes place. (4/23/14)

CLARKSTOWN - Rockland County is cracking down on prostitution by suing landlords who rent out space where prostitution takes place.

Thomas Humbach, the acting Rockland County attorney, says that in the last few years, Clarkstown police have made several prostitution arrests. While the accused sex workers are prosecuted, new ones are often recruited.

Humbach's office has filed civil complaints against the owners of those properties, under what is known as "public nuisance" laws.

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The landlords are now subject to civil fines of up to $1,000, and under some circumstances, properties can be padlocked.

Humbach believes the law will make landlords pay more attention to the businesses they rent to, and in some cases, evict renters. He says the idea of going after the landlords in civil court was done in coordination with the Rockland County District Attorney's Office and the Clarkstown Police Department.

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