BUSHWICK – A pair of landlord brothers in Brooklyn are under arrest and facing charges.
Police say Joel and Amrom Israel were taken into custody Thursday morning and will be arraigned by Judge Danny Chun in Downtown Brooklyn.
More information about the specific charges will be released by Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thomas at an afternoon news conference, but Eyewitness News first covered the Israel brothers back in March of 2014, when tenants claimed Joel Israel was trying to run them out of their residents by intentionally destroying their apartments.
“Like being in a shelter,” tenant Michelle Navas told reporter Josh Einiger at the time. “That’s pretty much how it feels.
Navas said she felt homeless in her very own apartment, where she grew up and lived for 24 years, claiming Israel walled off her kitchen and bathroom, leaving her with no plumbing for nine months.
“He wants us out,” she said. “He wants to evict us. He wants everyone in this building out, so he can raise the rent three or four times from what it is now.”
She said Israel promised to remodel the kitchen and bathroom, but instead left a gaping hole in the floor, right down into the basement.
Local lawmakers appeared with Navas on her Bushwick stoop at the time, trying to spotlight the crisis in affordable housing across Brooklyn.
It is unclear exactly what charges the Israel brothers will face.