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The Spanish Lawyer Online

Antonio Flores’ Blog

Thoughts about laws and regulations which affect foreigners in Spain


Posts Tagged ‘Grand Theft’

The Steins’ Grand Theft Saga – New Episode: Swindle in Sunny Spain!

February 27th, 2013

Some weeks back, we received a call from a Marbella-based couple who wanted to meet up to discuss a serious matter. The callers, an expat couple who run a business in an urbanization in Mijas-Costa, had apparently given significant sums of money over a number of years to another British/American couple, who they thought of as being “part of their family”, over various pretexts:  to invest securely in approved schemes, instant and desperate need of pocket money, pay off insistent creditors who were described as “loan-sharks”, help a son’s ailing company, the daughter’s maintenance following a bitter divorce, etc… all of it, as it turned out, without the slightest intention of ever returning any of it.

On cynically analyzing the content of the conversation, the story appeared to fundamentally have the hallmarks of that of a professionally carried-out swindle job à la Bernie Madoff; we quickly arranged to meet up at our office.

Although the material which we were later given was almost enough to construe a case of criminal fraud, the one thing that had gone unnoticed to the potential clients was what would the search engines come up with when typing the following words: “Sanford and Frances Stein”.

So, similarly to what had happened to “Nelson the IPhone thief”, these notoriously indecent individuals had their U.S. Criminal Court cases plastered all over the web, but, unlike stupid Nelson –who got the sack— the Machiavellian Boca Raton duo managed to get away with even more cheating. In Spain this time, at least till now.

Searches for daughter Lisa, who was mentioned at the beginning of this post, also produce relevant results: she had cheated $24,000 out of an ex-boyfriend called Patrick Martinez using her mum’s most effective scam line: the loan sharks. And she was only a young lady!

The son, a man called Paul Adam Stein, runs a legitimate Barcelona-based company called Worldwide Sales Corporation that still seems to be battling with electronics retailer giant BestBuy over the European trademark Best Buy as well as, ironically, the threatening nature of legal letters, pursuant to amusing English laws, sent in respect of a trade mark dispute.

Once the above information had been compiled, our firm contacted the parties to enter into an amicable discussion. Unfortunately, we did not have the courtesy of a response on the matter. What we did get was a threat of legal action for the posting of libelous information in respect of the Stein’s, although it was not clear whether the action would be directed against us or, rather more appropriately, Google (or perhaps jointly).

Their defense legal strategy is predictably to be repeated: admit nothing, deny everything and make counter-accusations, suing where possible.

As for Paul, he will most probably sue us on grounds that this is massive conspiracy against him, for he has no relationship with his parents or has any knowledge of what they got up to 20 odd years ago, even if Frances’ temporary absence from home was due to her, known to him or not, doing time in a US penitentiary. And yet, his parents live in a Marbella penthouse owned by a company that he is the sole director of.

Finally, this scam story could not be ended without listening to fraud-convicted compulsive-cheater Frances Stein going about telling lies on why a €480,000 transfer –a good chunk of it belonging to our clients— , was being held up in England. Evidently, the transfer never got to Spain because there is no such transfer, as there is no lawyer called David.


Litigation, Scams , , , , ,