Expat’s ‘illegal’ chateau hotel closed by cops

Expat's 'illegal' chateau hotel closed by cops
The Chateau La Tour which the Dutchman was allegedly renting out on Le Bon Coin. Photo: Gendarmerie Nationale
A Dutch expat is in hot water with the long arm of the French law after allegedly illegally renting rooms in his historic chateau in the south of France to scores of tourists through a classified ads website. Police raided the hotel last week.

A Dutchman charged with turning a French medieval castle into an illegal hotel has been remanded in custody, police said Tuesday.

The man is accused of renting out 35 rooms in the imposing Chateau La Tour near the pretty village of Saint-Pierreville in the southern Ardeche region on France's most popular Internet classified ads site Le Bon Coin, without the necessary permits or safety checks. 

Around 100 tourists were staying at the chateau and its 13-place campsite when police raided and closed the hotel last week.

The hotel's owner, who was not named, had hired around a dozen staff, apparently off-the-books, police said.

The chateau has since been closed to the public.

Police tweeted out news of the arrest on Tuesday.

"The Dutch owner of a hotel, exploited illegally, has been charged with fraud and remanded  in custody," the tweet said.

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