Celebrity chef Madison Cowan’s landlord claims he owes $73,700 in back rent.
via: New York Post
The British-born former champ of the Food Network’s “Chopped” and “Iron Chef” contests owes 28 months in back rent to the tune of $73,700 on a one-bedroom Boerum Hill apartment he and his family have occupied since October 2019, his landlord Gus Sheha claims.
Sheha told The Post Cowan – whose website notes he’s catered posh events for former President Bill Clinton, actress Scarlett Johansson and other A-listers — hasn’t paid a cent of his rent since January 2020. The monthly rent ranged from $2,700 to $2,750 over the length of his now-expired two-year lease.
Cowan took advantage of a pandemic-driven, state moratorium on evictions that stretched from March 2020 through Jan. 15, Sheha says, insisting his tenant has the means to pay his bills and is trying to “beat the system.”
“He leaves his house wearing a different fur every day,” said Sheha. “How broke can he be? If there was no COVID-19, I would have taken him to court two years ago to get him evicted.”
When the eviction moratorium was lifted in January, Sheha’s lawyer sent Cowan and his family a “90-day notice” informing them they must be out May 1 or the landlord would begin eviction proceedings.
Sheha said Cowan has yet to yet to respond. He added that the housing court system is so backlogged that he expects to wait at least another year before the case is heard while Cowan continues to live in Sheha’s State Street building rent-free.
Cowan did not return messages.
However, Sheha shared an Aug. 31 email between the two in which Cowan said the pandemic “negatively impact[ed]” his “income and bottom line.”
He also said he’s “willing to do [his] part” to help Sheha get his rent paid through a state rental assistance program, but Sheha questioned why Cowan waited until last June to apply.