Published: 15:08, 15 January 2018
Controversial landlord Fergus Wilson is suing a YouTuber for £10,000 over a video he uploaded saying the property mogul was 'coming across as racist.'
Danny Hyde's video came after news emerged of Mr Wilson's policy banning 'coloureds' from renting his properties because of curry smells.
The multimillionaire from Boughton Monchelsea intends to sue Mr Hyde, the controller the YouTube channel Danny Hyde TV, for what he calls a "grossly offensive" video which he believes breaches the malicious communications act 1988.
Mr Wilson told the Kent Messenger he took particular offence at being called a rude term among other insults leveled at him in the video.
Commenting on the policy, Mr Hyde who has nearly 2,000 subscribers, said in his video Mr Wilson was 'coming across as a racist," and other measures such as air fresheners and opening windows could be used to get rid of curry smells, rather than just banning certain people.
Mr Wislon said that legal action against the vlogger was not because of any implication that he was racist but because of the language he chose in the expletive laden video.
He said: "I won't take action over people who say I'm racist because there are too many people and I can't sue them all.
"It's not the content of what he wanted to say, it was the language that he selected, I was appalled at what this chap said in his opening sentence."
If the YouTuber doesn't settle out of court, the landlord has threatened to bring a private prosecution against him.
The directive was brought to light in an email to his letting agent leaked last year and in November a court ruled Mr Wilson's policy towards "coloureds" was unlawful.
Mr Wilson, 69, said it wasbecause of the cost of removing the smell of curry at the end of their tenancy.
But this week an injunction was issued by Maidstone County Court, ordering him to scrap the policy, after the UK’s equality watchdog took legal action.
The ban prompted the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) to contact Mr Wilson, requesting him to drop the policy, which he refused to do.
The body then began legal proceedings, saying Mr Wilson’s actions denied Indian and Pakistani people the chance to live in his homes.
Refusing to rent or let a property based on race is unlawful as it breaches section 13 of the Equality Act 2010.
In court, Mr Wilson denied he was a racist and told the court he was one of the few landlords who would take black tenants.
At first he insisted he was joking about the ban in his email to the letting agent. He later defended it, saying it was put in place on economic, not racial, grounds due to the costs of cleaning properties left with curry smells.
An injunction was passed, banning him from applying criteria discriminating against “coloured” tenants or those of Indian or Pakistani backgrounds. It will remain in place for three years. He was also ordered to pay costs of £2,665. If Mr Wilson complies with the ruling, no further action will be taken.
If he were to persist with the policy, it may be considered contempt of court and he could be fined.
More by this authorWilliam Janes