- September 22, 2014 at 1:08 pm #183307
I am being sent intimidating emails with Mafia overtones hinting at violence towards my family and I, both in Spain and the UK. I believe these are being sent by some people I recently banned from this website for spreading lies and slander. I’m asking for help to confirm their true identities so I can report them to the British and Spanish police before they cause any more harm.
I’m particularly concerned about my mother. Elderly and recently widowed, she is now living in fear as I’ve had to warn her not to open the door to anyone, and avoid going out. She doesn’t understand any of this, and I can’t say it makes much sense to me either.
Who are the people behind these threats? I can’t be sure because they like to smear and threaten from the shadows, hiding behind anonymity and multiple online identities. Which is why I am appealing for help before I go to the Police.
I suspect the threats are coming from a couple living in Kent. She used to post here under the username of ‘Angie’, whilst he smears and threatens using various names including ‘Paul’, ‘Phil’, ‘Scambuster’ and ‘Factman’.
Surely intimidating threats hinting at Mob-style violence are a criminal offence? I need to talk to the police in both countries about these cranks. If you know anything about them please contact me urgently by PM or email info at spanishpropertyinsight dot com.
Thanks if you can help,
- September 23, 2014 at 5:56 pm #183340
I think anyone who has been involved in the property market in Spain over the last 10 years may understand why individual feelings of anger and frustration run so high.
Hundreds of people have lost their life savings, had their dreams destroyed and some unfortunates completely ruined.
Mark Stuckin was not to blame for any of that. However the marketing and advertising of Spanish property to gullible innocent people by others carries a large amount of responsibility.
When I read some articles here on SPI that talk up the market again I start to worry it will all happen again. A new generation of almost retired Brits willing to risk their lifetime assets on a punt in the market in Spain without any clue to the dangers and blinded by a dream.
Other people have these same concerns but who are willing to take more drastic direct actions which are wrong.
I would like to make it clear that I personally do not in any way condone the behaviour of people who make personal threats towards Mark and his family. It is stupid, morally unjustified, unnecessary and actually illegal. Mark runs this web site which is designed to attract property advertising. The web site used to be a more campaigning forum exposing the dangers and realities of this market. However that is not attractive to advertisers bend on pushing dreams. That unfortunately is the commercial world we all inhabit.
Mark made changes in emphasis to this site and since he is the owner it’s his absolute right to do whatever he wants with it. We who disagree with the new site ethos can and have migrated elsewhere and continue the fight.
The fight and struggle to reform and better regulate the Spanish property market goes on. The market is moribund anyway and I have posted on here why no thinking investor should consider going anywhere near it for many years to come. At least not until the Spanish government finally take action to clean the market up.
Small movements in statistics do not in any way indicate a recovery is on the way. Yet dishonest advertisers will and do clutch at anything they can to try and boost their sales. This site should not assist that process in my view. However that’s a decision for the owner.
Whoever is making these threats towards Mark is not furthering any cause, simply indulging themselves with spiteful aggression.
- September 24, 2014 at 4:29 pm #183345
Unfortunately there are few forums these days where the owners make themselves publically known. I’ve known people eventually shut down popular and successful forums because they ended up spending their entire lives dealing with spam and trolls, and the they felt they were becoming more and more exposed and vulnerable to abuse. The posters who were banned would have been banned on most forums a long time ago – I was quite surprised Mark let it go on so long. Continously attacking new posters and insulting those who offered different opinions. If threats have been made then the police generally have the technology these days to track down and prosecute the culprits. If they are put on alert they can track IP addresses to various ISPs, and then those ISPs will monitor certain traffic to identify who is sending the messages. There are also various pattern matching algorithms out there that they can use to monitor certain behaviour and identify trolls.
Personally I don’t recall Mark directly talking up the market as a whole, but rather passing on whatever news releases were being published. In fact I remember one thread where we came to the conclusion that the market had fallen by a lot more than the official data was showing. I agree with Logan that the Spanish market needs to be much better regulated, however I don’t have too much sympathy for those who got burnt by the collapse. It was obvious the market was way too high and needed a correction, and if people moved their life savings into a market they were unfamiliar with then that’s their fault. Spanish property is risky, which means you need to carry out a lot of research and enter the waters slowly. Of course I have plenty of sympathy for the Priors and the illegal properties scandal, as there was nothing they could do about that. But those who bought without researching the market thoroughly got what they deserved. Markets go up and down. Not everyone can be a winner all the time.
- September 24, 2014 at 7:52 pm #183347
I think Chopera you have distanced yourself too far from the common man.
Whilst I agree with most of your post, when it comes to ordinary people’s dreams and aspirations being shattered your statements are perhaps unwittinglycruel.
Professional investors are a different beast. They fully understand the market implications and when they lose it’s simply an occupational hazard. They never bet the farm on anything.
Ordinary people by that I mean the average working man or woman have no sophisticated access to market data. No knowledge of the dangers of investing in countries like Spain. No highly paid consultants to advise. I have heard it said many times, “Spain’s in the EU so it must be OK”.
Sites such as SPI should try and fill a void. Not simply reinforce peoples aspirations.
The public are encouraged by advertisers and just about everyone else to have aspirations, ambition, dreams. It takes a lifetime to learn how to achieve these things safely. Most don’t have the time or the inclination to understand how. They want it now and if they have liquidated their life savings in order to achieve it they will use those funds to get that dream regardless.
You seem to believe that it’s just tough if they fall into the hands of the spivs. That’s market economics folks. I believe ordinary people who have worked hard, paid up and played the game all their lifetime deserve nothing less than the protection from governments who have a duty to regulate markets properly so it’s impossible to lose.
France and Germany can do it effectively, why not Spain?
Markets such as the Spanish property market are almost totally unregulated. Sham protections are punted by both banks and developers. Rural land is illegally given building permits. Corrupt officials and lawyers look the other way.
I have bought land and buildings in the long and distant past that was mortgaged by other people, long disappeared. I have bought urbanised land only to discover years later it was in fact designated rural land.
It’s still possible in 2014 to buy a property in Spain that carries someone else’s debt. I have been round the business block many times yet can still get caught by the corrupt behaviour of the Spanish. What chance do ordinary working people really have?
You may not have much sympathy for foolish risk. Yet sometimes it’s all people have to improve their lives.
- September 26, 2014 at 10:39 am #183379
Mark, Simply report the threats to the police, especially in the UK. Unless said person “Angie” is some kind of superhacker then the police will very easily be able to trace the source of the threats and take action. They take matters like this very seriously, just because the threat is made over the internet/by email it is no less a threat. In fact, it’s more so because the evidence is there and clear, no way for somebody to say “that’s not what I said” or ” must have misheard me”.
If people don’t like the site, or the content of the site then don’t visit the site. It’s a free world and nobody makes you log on here or read the site.
There is never any excuse for threats of violence, and if said person is really making threats against Marks mother then I would question their sanity.
- September 27, 2014 at 5:42 pm #183427
i dont know mark personally. however, he is a close acquaintance & occasional collaborator of a very good friend of mine who does hold him in high esteem. i have always found the SPI page even handed & well informed. what more can anyone say, what else can anyone expect?
- September 29, 2014 at 1:38 am #183437
Mark I am sorry to hear these people resorted to such disgraceful activity on your site, no one gets a free pass at threatening you or your family! In my opinion, you have managed this forum (and your comments) spectacularly and have threaded the needle as best as anyone could have to maintain their impartiality/credibility.
- This reply was modified 2 years, 3 months ago by kgpoc.
- October 1, 2014 at 10:25 pm #183507
Thanks to all of you who have sent messages of support. This is now in the hands of the authorities.
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