Previously Convicted Illegal Vacation Rental Business Operator in Santa Monica Receives Increased Sentence
Code Enforcement’s proactive probation and diversion monitoring achieves just results
December 18, 2018
SANTA MONICA, Calif. — The Santa Monica City Attorney’s Office successfully sought and obtained an enhanced sentence for Shabi Jafri, a local real estate agent who was convicted of operating an illegal vacation rental business in June 2018 and subsequently violated his diversion terms. Santa Monica Code Enforcement Officers actively monitor each probationer to ensure compliance with probation and diversion conditions. Officers promptly sought action upon learning of violations by Mr. Jafri.
“The City of Santa Monica has consistently dedicated policies to producing, protecting and preserving housing in our community,” said Chief Deputy City Attorney Yibin Shen. “While City prosecutors use innovative tools, such as diversion and probation programs, to achieve justice with opportunity for rehabilitation; we and our law enforcement partners actively monitor compliance, and promptly take action to ensure rigorous compliance with diversion/probation terms in order to fully effectuate the legislative objectives that we are charged to enforce”.
In June 2018, Mr. Jafri was convicted of unlawfully taking nine residential housing units off of the rental housing market and operating them as illegal vacation rentals, and of his refusal to comply with City Administrative Citations. Upon his conviction, he was placed on formal diversion, which gave him an opportunity to earn a possible future dismissal of the case by demonstrating contrition and compliance.
However, Code Enforcement Officers, through their proactive probation and diversion monitoring program soon discovered that Mr. Jafri was continuing to engage in the same unlawful activities.
On December 12, 2018, City Prosecutor Michael Cobden sought and obtained an enhanced sentence against Mr. Jafri in Los Angeles Superior Court. Judge TK Herman ordered Mr. Jafri to:
- Perform 112 hours of community labor.
- Perform 140 hours of community service.
- Pay restitution to the City of Santa Monica in the amount of $3,915 in investigation costs.
- Comply with all laws, including the City’s Home-Sharing Ordinance’s prohibition against hosting, facilitating, aiding, or advertising a vacation rental in the City.
“We agree with and appreciate the Court’s sentencing
Home-Sharing in Santa Monica
After maintaining a multi-decade prohibition against short-term rentals in residential districts, in 2015, the City eased this prohibition by authorizing a form of short-term rentals known as Home-Sharing, wherein a resident is free to host visitors for compensation for a period of
For more information on the City’s Home-Sharing Ordinance or to apply for a Home-Sharing License, visitwww.smgov.net/homeshare.
To report an illegal vacation rental business, contact Code Enforcement at (310) 458-4984.