Way back in September 2016 while writing for the previous publication Inside Timeshare, the first of the “Fake” law firms supposedly based in Tenerife made an appearance, Litigious Abogados. There was a previous one going by the name of Litigar Abogados and these were obviously linked and being operated by the same people.
As time progressed, more began to appear, with a frequency of around three months a new name and website came online, they became known as “The Litigious Abogados Family”. All the websites were identical apart from the name and logo, the date of incorporation and the names of the lawyers which were accompanied by photographs of genuine people downloaded from other sites. The same images were used on several websites with only name changes, some were quite humorous.
It was not just the websites which were the same, all used the same format for the fake court documents, and all the letters carried numerous logos of genuine organisations such as the Colegio de Abogados. These letters were also very lengthy full of quotes from different laws the case revolved around, but all the same apart from the “defendant company” along with the “named director”. Many genuine timeshare names have been used, with most clearly never being associated with the named companies.
The scams all took the same format, a court case was being filed or had been filed and you are part of it, backed up with fake court documents, if the case had already been “heard”, a copy of a cheque showing what you had been awarded. The cheque incidentally was fake, it belonged to a bank which didn’t exist, swallowed up by a bigger bank, with all the name changes etc.
Then there were the fees and taxes which needed to be paid, these were made payable to their “procurator” into a named “personal” account. Very loud alarm bells on that one.
The scam even progressed to sending the “cheque” by post to the “client”, who upon receipt found the “jiffy bag” opened, containing a letter and a staple in one corner with a torn piece of paper, where the cheque should have been.
Needless to say, another series of letters arrived by either post or email, these stated that the cheques had been cashed, but the good news is they have identified a “gang of East Europeans” and 14 local postal workers in the theft.
The problem was that another “fee” was payable to start proceedings to get the money back, and so the scam progressed. Each new phase brought new demands for “legal fees and taxes” along with whatever else they could think of.
Their cheek didn’t end there, it was the use of photographs of genuine persons as “their lawyers”.
The first memorable “identification” was in June 2017, it depicted the “founder of the “Law Firm Armando Gareca Abogados”. He was named as Agustin Bigote Pringata, but in fact was the Azerbaijani Ambassador to Argentina, Rashad Aslanov. The first picture was from their website, the second is the official photograph of the Ambassador handing his credentials to the Argentinian President. This picture was published in March 2017, two months before being used by the fraudsters.
Rafael Caldera, the 39th President of Venezuela who passed away in 2009, was the next prominent person to be used, he was portrayed as the founder of SG Abogados Raul Degelis Grinudos.
Our next identification was for the “founder” of Torcaz Abogados, Fernando Olawza Garcia and Amador Dularta Colatamo of Abogados El Paloma. The genuine person is in fact a distinguished US Judge, Judge Dana Makoto Sabraw, for the United States District Court for the Southern District of California.
Abogados Las Alas was the next one with a double identification. Alberto Canbamo Farola was named as the “founder” of the firm, the photograph shows a rather distinguished gentleman, but Alberto is not genuine. His real name is Andrés Manuel López Obrador, and is still the current President of Mexico, he assumed office on 1 December 2018.
Along with the Mexican President, they also portrayed one of their senior lawyers, Antonio Lamamel Cunio, who is, in fact, Carlos Torres Vila, he just happens to be President of the Spanish banking group BBVA.
These are just some of the prominent people they have used, many more lawyers, public servants and secretaries have had their images downloaded from company websites, news outlets and general image searches on the likes of google. They even reversed the images and changed them into monochrome in an effort to prevent identification, didn’t work did it?
The list of names used for the law firms, procurators and asseorias numbered 87 when it was published in March 2019, since then many more have been added with the latest being Litigandolo Abogados.
- Abogacia Española
- Abogados Abel Garcia
- Amador Ganeca – Amador Juandoz Ganeca
- Abogados AG – Armando Gonzalez Areca
- Abogados Amable Garcia
- Abogados Canarias
- Abogados Galvera
- Abogados Litigacion España – JDD
- AG Abogados
- Alberto Kalimro Galvera Abogados
- Alberto Diendro Nabalez – Litigacion España
- Alberto Rogalvera
- Alejandro Omross Procuradores
- Amador Galeca Abogados
- Amador Ganeca
- Amador Malodan Galeca
- Angel Alarcon Prieto Notario
- Armando Gareca Abogados
- Auxiliar Lawyers
- Auxiliares Lawyers
- Auxilium SA
- Bulganu & Valentin Asesoria
- Carlos Igraim Procurador
- Carlos Ingramo Procuradores
- Carlos Imgran Procuraduria
- Darstun Jilmo Davida Procurador
- Davido Thursta Procurador
- Daniel Marco Yariz Procurador
- Elias Elisa SA
- Elinabeta Yessica Elierz Procuradores
- Elisabetta Olias Asesoria
- Embalori Abogados
- Emilio Leyes Catillianos
- European Union Complaints
- EU Litigation Services
- Fernando Holaci
- Ivana Birka Asesoria
- Jessica Kiegle Procurador y Notario
- Juan Luis Partalabo Lawyer
- La Litigacion Española
- Legalidad Abogados S.A.
- Legalidades Abogados
- Legalidades Tenerife
- Legitimous – legitimos Abogados
- Litigacion abogados
- Litigacion Espana SL
- Litigaciones SL
- Litigar Abogados
- Litigious Lawyers -Litigious Abogados
- Luca Linder Trust
- Luna Kinden Asesoria
- Manuel Amas Conde
- Manuel Cilavoz Varintos – Varintos Abogados
- Manuel Diralam Abogados
- Manuel Hidualdo Abogados
- Marco Cravina Asesoria – Marco Carvina
- Marco de Ciocci Translator
- Marco Gravinal Procurador
- Miguel Mesa Martinez
- Miguel Mesa Montoya
- Nabalez Abogados – Alberto Dilendro Nabalez
- Notario Yari Marca S.A.
- Owners Association
- Paulo Finucie Asesoria
- Paulo Morris Asesoria
- Poveda Lawyers
- Procurador Ramon Juanco Comez
- Procurador Ramon Josardo Golmerz
- Procuradores Alexander Bowross
- Procuradores Comerz – Ramon Juanca Comez
- Procuradores Golmerz
- Procuradores Gomerz – Ramon Josema Gomerz
- Procuradores Gonzalez – Alfonso Emilio Gonzalez
- Procuradores Igraim- Carlos Rihom Igraim
- Procuradores Omross – Alejandro Omross
- Procuradores Salinas – Miguel Salinas Procurador
- Procuradores Raya – Miguel Earas Raya Procuradores
- Procuradores Tabreul – Abel Deraza Tabreul
- Procuraduria Carlos Gregorio Ingramo
- Ramon Mesa Gorrin
- Ricardo Zanino Asesoria
- Roberto Arturo Sanson Abogados
- Rodrigo Hoya Asesoria
- Simone Mesa Martinez Abogados
- Simone Meza Mendez
- Thirstun & Robi Claims Asesoria
You have to admit the names they choose for their firms, lawyers, secretaries and associates have always proved to be hilarious, especially some of the variations of the same name. They are also suspected of being involved in similar scams emanating from Greece and Mainland Spain, which also bear the hallmarks of the “Litigious Abogados Family”.
What we now have to consider is the lengths these fraudsters have gone to in setting all this up, there are the websites, email addresses and telephone numbers, then all the documents and letters to be produced, then let us not forget all the associated bank accounts. Somewhere along the line identification will have been needed, either it is genuine and stooges are being used or forged identification has been used, there will always be a trail.
We also wonder how many people have succumbed to the scam and paid the “fees & taxes” all influenced by fake documents and a very convincing pitch, it has to be a hell of a lot for this scam to be running for around 7 years and is still going.
These true-life scams really do reinforce the point about “Cold Callers, Unsolicited Emails, Post and Texts”, never take at face value anything they tell you, don’t be swayed by the promise of thousands being returned, the only thousands will be taken from you. Do your homework, check and check again, but rule number one is if they called you then it is 99.9% certain of being a scam.