For Kaushik Dattani, a tax preparer and property owner in the Mission, tax day may be especially taxing. Dattani is one of Eviction Free San Francisco’s “dirty dozen,” a landlord with a reputation for serial evictions, and the group is using April 15 to draw attention to the landlord’s recent Ellis Act evictions.
“We’re hitting him where it hurts,” said organizer Erin McElroy about the group’s plans to picket outside Dattani’s office at 2 p.m. on 22nd and Bartlett and lead a phone campaign urging Dattani to rescind the evictions of tenants at 3305 20th Street.
In February of this year, housing rights activists held a similar protest outside of Dattani’s office. According to McElroy, Dattani is a serial evictor with a history of using the Ellis Act to flip units.
“He’s actually a property flipper, he’s bought properties only to evict tenants and turn buildings into condos,” McElroy said. “There’s clear proof that he entered and exited properties numerous times.”
In 2007, Dattani received a summary judgment to use the Ellis Act to evict 12 tenants at 3465 19th Street to convert the building to Tenancy in Common (TIC). As the San Francisco Bay Guardian reports, the eviction came after Dattani received a $1.3 million loan from the Circle Bank of Marin. The loan included a clause that he would take the rental units off the market and sell them as TICs.
As the Guardian also reports, Dattani had evicted tenants from a space above Revolution Cafe on 22nd and the owner of a flower shop.
Neither Dattani nor his son Tej, who is also a business partner, would comment for this story. Court records indicate that Dattani does have a long history as a landlord in the Mission. He currently owns at least four buildings in the neighborhood, including a nine-unit building on Capp and 17th, a single unit building on Capp and 22nd, a four-story condominium on 18th Street, and the three-story building on 20th and Folsom. Records also indicate that Dattani owns numerous properties in Richmond, many bought out of foreclosure.
Protesters will be picketing Dattani’s office at 2 p.m. today.