By Euro Weekly News Media • 29 October 2014 • 16:36
A PALMA waiter has won a five-year battle to establish his identity and has inherited €2 million in the process.
Esteban Marchena Garcia (pictured) has claimed for years that he is the illegitimate son of a wealthy Sevilla landowner, and has now been awarded his slice of a multi-million- euro inheritance.
The result of an affair between 17-year-old servant girl Encarnacion Marchena and wealthy aristocrat Juan Velez Utrera, the infant Esteban was not recognised by his father as he was illegitimate. Encarnacion was working on Utrera’s Sevilla estate when she gave birth to Esteban in 1955. His mother was forced to put Esteban up for adoption because of lack of money, but later kept in contact and told him who his father was.
When Utrera died in 2001, his estate was divided up among his three legitimate sons, and Esteban – seeking justice for his mother – started legal proceedings in 2009 for his share of his father’s fortune.
The 59-year-old waiter obtained a court order for the exhumation of Utrera’s body in order for DNA testing to be carried out, but the family had secretly dug up the corpse and had it cremated.
Utrera’s three legitimate sons also refused to provide their DNA for testing to see if they were related to Esteban – who works as a waiter in Palma de Mallorca – or not.
However, a judge in Sevilla last week awarded Esteban his €2 million share of Utrera’s fortune given the “extraordinary obstruction” of the three brothers and the strong family resemblance were enough to prove Utrera is Esteban’s biological father.
Utrera, whose mother died just two months ago, said it was a great shame she had died not knowing this news.
In 2006 Spain changed its inheritance laws to allow children born outside marriage the same right to inherit family fortunes as legitimate sons and daughters. Since then dozens of cases have emerged involving illegitimate children claiming their right to inheritance.
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