Expats in Spain warned of ‘property scam’ as mum and son left ‘homeless’ after €320k home sold for €28k

Expats in Spain warned as mum and son left 'homeless' Credit: Alex Tyhonovs/Shutterstock.com.

EXPATS living in Spain are being warned after a mum and son were left ‘homeless’ when their €320,000 home was sold for €28,000 in what she describes as a ‘property scam’.

Victoria Jenkins and her son Sam were reportedly left homeless after Spanish authorities ‘secretly sold’ their two-bedroom apartment in the Costa Del Sol ‘to pay for ex’s debt’.

The British-born mum has lived in the property for 22 years – her son, aged 13, was born at the resort – but she says they were both served with an eviction notice after the authorities sold their house at a fraction of the price.

The ‘secret’ auction, which she says was without her knowledge, saw the property go for just €28,000 to pay for debts allegedly incurred by her ex-partner, Lee Cohen, the official property owner.

Ms Jenkins claims she is not the only expat to be affected by the alleged property seizure scandal, claiming that this was done ‘deliberately’.

She claims after finally getting permission from the court to see her case file, she discovered eviction notices and letters about the sale were being sent to the wrong address.

She said: “Notifications about the sale were sent to the wrong address, leaving me not allowed to speak. I have had the same address, email, and phone number the whole time I’ve been in Spain.

“All the court documents have the correct address, but the notifications were sent to one that doesn’t exist.

“Because it looked like I was not responding, the judge automatically ruled in their favour without me knowing about it or being given a fair hearing or chance to put my side and legal documents forward.

“When it looked to the judge that I was not responding he granted them the eviction and they had no problem finding me and banging on my door when it was time to kick me out. I don’t know how these people sleep at night.”

She added: “We have had our home sold from underneath us and we have not been given a penny, despite there being hundreds of thousands of euros in equity in the home.

“How can this be happening – it just seems so unfair. What about my son? He’s lived here his whole life, he goes to school here.”

When asked why these auctions were being carried out, a spokeswoman for Mijas Town Hall told the newspaper she believed the last sales were “carried out between 2012 and 2016”, but did not know the exact date.

She claimed the auctions were not being carried out in ‘secret’ and were “in accordance with the legal guidelines”.

The spokeswoman added that information about the auctions is published and is publicly accessible, but could not say where and how this information is available.

The Euro Weekly News has contacted the town hall for further comment.

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Vickie S
Written by

Vickie Scullard

A journalist of more than 12 years from Manchester, UK, Vickie now lives in Madrid and works as a news writer for the Euro Weekly News.


    • John McLean

      25 October 2022 • 15:34

      reading the full story, she did not and never has owned the home, it has always been owned by her expartner who left her to live in Thailand several years ago. So she would never have been given any of the money from the equity any way

      • Kirsty

        26 October 2022 • 13:23

        Her child had a right to alimony. She had a court sentence too. The very people that should have helped this child have taken everything from him instead. More than enough equity in that home to support that child. Awful. His legal rights have been ignored.

    • John

      25 October 2022 • 19:06

      All that John says is true but the authorities still behaved despicably, especially as they would have known the house was occupied by a single mother and child. Any why virtually give the house away? They could have got far more than £28k for it if they had wanted to. Heartless behaviour – surely any court would see that.

    • Keith Boyce

      25 October 2022 • 21:04

      Legal aspects aside , I do not think enough action was taken by authorities to track down the resident who was still living in the property , surely a simple knock on the door would have revealed the problems . To sell the property for that ridiculous price was criminal as well as making a mother and child homeless 😡

    • John Lewington

      26 October 2022 • 10:21

      Regardless of ownership by the occupier it sounds like the theft of a lot of equity by authorities and something that should be further investigated

    • Ricky

      26 October 2022 • 11:45

      What about the legal aspect of the child? She had no rights but the child has a legal right to be financially supported by both parents. She had a court order already. There was a debt to the child too. Why was his child alimony not taken into account?

    • Ricky

      26 October 2022 • 11:48

      Problem…A 270k property with no mortgage. A 4k debt. A missing dad. A fatherless child.
      TOWN HALLS SOLUTION? Sell the home for 28k and put the child on the street and ignore his alimony.
      What lovely intelligent people.
      The very people that should have been protecting this childs rights have stolen off him instead. There was more than enough equity to ensure this child did not need to suffer. Disgusting

    • Neil Cary

      26 October 2022 • 14:19

      This just shows that the Spanish System is so outdated and stupid and is run by idiots who should not be doing there jobs

    • Graham

      29 October 2022 • 10:29

      any debt a person has is not with them but
      any they property they own this is the husband’s fault and his wife he should have signed over the property or she should have made him for the child she should have known about this living in Spain when living in a foreign country it’s there rules
      why is it always some one else’s fault it’s the parents fault

    • Brian

      29 October 2022 • 13:25

      everyone is saying she should have done this should have that.
      whether or not the money that was owed was secured on the property ,that is a legal matter.
      this property was stolen by the local council via questionable legal means. this woman need to fight this, she need to inform the ex partner, to say the council has stolen the property. they can not be allowed to get a way with this.who next?

    • Ricardo

      29 October 2022 • 14:21

      She lived in Spain for 20 years.. How the hell she never knew how they easily taking advantage of foreign (specially English) in their country. It’s better and safe to get property in Portugal than Spain. I’m Spanish by the way 😥

    Comments are closed.