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Bed-Stuy tenants say landlord trying to bully them out of building

BEDFORD-STUYVESANT, Brooklyn — An ongoing dispute between a group tenants and their landlord now has the city stepping in to investigate.

Tenants said the landlord began using scare tactics— like locking them out of their apartments.

“They are trying to kick everybody out and flip this whole building and raise rent,” said Rita Rader, a resident of 693 Madison Street.

Vader said everything began earlier this year when the building was bought by JIH Builders. Residents said they were told no leases would be renewed.

However, most of the people living in the eight unit building thought they lived in a rent stabilized building — so as long as they kept paying their rent they could stay.

Rader said when people started having their rent checks returned and harassment began.

“They called and e-mailed us multiple times to see if we are moving out at the end of December,” Rader said. “We didn’t call back because we are rent stabilized and have rights here.”

Neighbors said JIH has also had construction done at all hours of the day. One resident said paint fumes were so overwhelming she was hospitalized.

Thing culminated earlier this week when Jane Ledesma said she came home to find she was locked out of her apartment. Her roommate recorded a video showing how the keys did not work and damage to the door.

Both the tenants and the landlord are now involved in a legal battle.

PIX11 tried JIH Builders at their office and at two different phone numbers. In a voicemail, PIX11 made clear they were interesting in hear the landlord’s side of the story.

There was no response as of broadcast time.

City inspectors are expected at the building within the next few days. PIX11 will check with the Department of Housing Preservation and Development for the results of the investigation.