The Court of Appeals has overturned last year's lower appellate court decision that an East Village tenant should get to keep her rent stabilized apartment even though her landlord claimed that she spent more than half the year living in Vermont. As evidence, the landlord cited the fact that the electric bills for the apartment were negligible, but the tenant, one Masako Mogi, claimed that the reason for that was because she ate a lot of take out and made a lot of sushi (and apparently didn't turn the lights on, or refrigerate the sushi ingredients). This was dubbed "the sushi defense," and the appellate court bought it, voting 3-2 in Mogi's favor. (Does anyone else have a sudden craving for sushi?)
After another appeal from the landlord, a higher appellate court has overturned that decision, however, which means that after six years the case has reached its ultimately unsurprising conclusion. Mogi will have to give up her $992/month studio apartment, which she has lived in (more or less) since 1980.
· East Village woman's 'sushi defense' for rent stabilized apartment falls flat [NYDN]
· EVill Tenant Wins Six-Year Eviction Battle With 'Sushi Defense' [Curbed]