Property scam gypsies strike again

A GYPSY couple, known as Túlia and Nelo, who have used a legal ploy to pocket money from phoney property purchases, have struck again according to reports at the weekend.

At least five establishments have so far been targeted by this scam (see front page story in last week’s edition of The Resident).

The well dressed couple express an interest in buying an apartment in a luxury condominium and pay an initial deposit – anything between 15,000 and 45,000 euros. The following day, dressed in their everyday gypsy clothing and with troublesome

children in tow, they return to create mayhem on the estate. The seller, under pressure from other residents not to sell a property to the ‘problem family’, cancels the contract, and isobliged by law to return double the original deposit to the would-be ‘buyers’.

The most recent ‘target’ of the couple was allegedly the condominium of Má Partilha in Alvor. The episode reportedly ended at a police station in Palmela, near the developer’s home, after he had informed police of the situation and made an appointment with the couple to sign the escritura. The couple, seeing their intentions dashed, accepted the return of just the deposit in question – 20,000 euros.

Authorities now suspect that the group is extending its activities to the rest of the country.