Days after calling code enforcement against illegal vacation rentals a “top priority” for Key West and Monroe County, the first arrest has been made. 

A task force of Key West Code Compliance and the Key West Police Department arrested Michael McMahon and issued him a notice to appear in court for illegally renting through AirBnB. 

McMahon owns three properties in Key West and is charged with violating Gov. Ron DeSantis’ Order 20-87 prohibiting vacation rentals in the state. He is also charged with a city ordinance violation because he was operating without a transient rental permit.

McMahon is a repeat offender who owes the city about $1.2 million in fines, city spokeswoman Alyson Crean said in a news release.

The task force will continue to pursue illegal rentals in Key West in order to ensure the best possible recovery of the community’s health and economy. 

“We need these illegal rentals to stop,” said City Manager Greg Veliz. “This is an order by the governor. We need everyone doing the right thing and heeding the protective orders to curb the spread of this insidious disease.”

The crackdown is the latest in the city’s measures intended to slow the spread of the coronavirus. On April 5, the city also renewed its seven-day emergency order and announced new protective measures for essential businesses, including reducing maximum capacity and requiring face coverings.