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Newton Landlord Sued by AG for Discrimination, Lead Paint Violations

Keith L. Miller owns at least 24 properties in Chelsea, Newton, Arlington and Brighton.

A Newton man has been sued by Attorney General Martha Coakley's office for violating state housing, lead paint, consumer protection and anti-discrimination laws. 

According to a press release issued Wednesday by Coakley's office, Keith L. Miller skirted state lead paint laws by discriminating against tenants with children.

Miller -- who manages at least 24 properties in Newton, Arlington, Chelsea and Brighton -- evicted some tenants with young children in addition to renting some apartments that contained lead paint to tenants with children, the release said.

Moreover, the AG's complaint says Miller also failed to notify tenants of potential lead paint in properties and made "misrepresentations" of lead paint in properties. He also failed to abate lead hazards in some of his properties, the complaint says.

“Tenants with young children have a right to housing that is free of lead paint hazards, and landlords have a responsibility to provide safe housing under state law.  Massachusetts law prohibits landlords from evicting or otherwise discriminating against tenants because they have children,” Coakley said in yesterday's press release.  “We allege that Mr. Miller discriminated against his tenants, put their health and well-being at risk, and unlawfully pursued evictions against them.”

Coakley's office filed the complaint following an investigation by the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination that found Miller had discriminated and retaliated against tenants in Newton and Chelsea, the press release said. 

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