Manhattan

Airbnb Bans Illicit Van Host After NYC Bust ‘Operation Room Service'

A van towed by city authorities allegedly illegally registered and used as an Airbnb rental.
NYC Sheriff

The host behind an illegal van rental operation on the streets of New York City has been booted from Airbnb, a company spokesperson confirmed.

Authorities announced the bust last week of seven vans impounded over the course of two days allegedly used as overnight rentals in a number of Manhattan neighborhoods.

"We do not tolerate this behavior, and Airbnb prohibits stays to be listed on public lands. Both the Host and listings in question have been banned from the Airbnb platform," a spokesperson for the company said.

The New York Post, which first reported on the host's ban, said Airbnb wouldn't elaborate on how the host received approval from the company.

Coined "operation room service," deputies from the sheriff's office, in partnership with the NYPD, busted more than half a dozen vehicles.

Sheriff Joseph Fucito told NBC New York that investigators discovered the parked vans on streets throughout Chelsea and the East Village were being used as rentals for Airbnb.

According to the records shared by Fucito's office, all seven of the vans had license New Jersey license plates. Registrations for three of the vans had expired more than four years while three others had plates belonging to other vehicles. The seventh van wasn't registered.

Five of the vans were picked up and impounded from the East Village while the other two were spotted in Chelsea.

Fucito said the office's investigation included a YouTuber's review of allegedly renting out one of the vans in the East Village.

Copyright NBC New York
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