Woman Claims A Stranger Stole Her House Using A Fake Deed, Moved In

You can’t pick it up, shove it in your jacket and walk away with it, but a house can still be stolen, it seems. A senior citizen in New York says an ex-convict faked the deed to her family home in Queens and moved in, effectively stealing her house.

She claims that the convicted armed robber moved into the three-bedroom home with his two sons in February, reports the New York Post.

Now she’s taken her problem to court, where she has to fight to evict the unwanted threesome from the home her grandparents moved into when it was new in 1931. It’s filled with family heirlooms and things the family has collected from around the world over the years, and became hers many years ago after her mother passed away.

“The house was maintained basically as a sanctuary to my family,” she says, as she who paid insurance, taxes and utility bills on the house and stopped by from her place in Manhattan every few months.

She didn’t rent it out, so when her February water bill shot up, she thought something might be wrong. She called the police, who reported back that there was a man living there who claimed to be the legal resident.

When she checked it out herself, she says she was “horrified” to find that the locks had been changed and the car she kept there was gone. Most everything inside was gone it seemed, as she peeked in the window.

“Everything from Chinese palace vases to my underwear,” she says. Neighbors apparently saw trucks arrive in February and workers moving furniture out, while the new occupants became a part of the neighborhood.

Another phone call to the police was uneventful after no one answered the door. The police told her to take it to court, so she and her lawyer began investigating. They found a deed transfer filed by the man, which said he’d obtained the home in March 2013 from a woman with an address that doesn’t exist, with a phone number that has a voicemail box for a man’s name.

Officials with the Finance Department confirmed the deed was faked, and issued a new one with the woman’s name on it.

While that office is reportedly investigating the issue, which might be a small piece of a larger scam, the man hasn’t been charged yet. It apparently used to be easier to file a fake deed than it is to breathe, according to the Post.

Now she has noting to do but try to evict the family in court. The man didn’t appear in August at a court date, so a judge gave the okay for eviction. Then came a snag last week when the man said he couldn’t move out due to health problems. He’s set to be in court tomorrow.

The extraordinary ‘theft’ of a woman’s NYC home [New York Post]

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