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Eze Group

End the Week

It’s the end of another week and time to have a relaxing weekend to recharge the old batteries. This week Inside Timeshare began with an update on the latest incarnation of our old friends the “FAKE” Litigious Abogados Family, Abogados El Paloma. New information was received on the new Procurator and the bank account the payments were to be paid into, Nicola Nonche Cirom. Judging by the paperwork they are using the usual Modus Operandi so we can expect to hear more of them in the future. We then brought you the article titled “One-Sided Press Reports?” This article revolves around an article by Andrew Penman on a court case involving Club La Costa and a timeshare “exit” company called Carl James Associates, today we can reveal the latest information to arrive. We also brought you some news and updates from the courts.

We begin today with information received by one of Inside Timeshares long-standing readers who read the article “One-Sided Press Reports?”

The article named several people one being Gerry Tiernan, who it turns out was previously a Sales and Marketing Director for Eze Group, well, our reader has also come up with some incredible information on the director of Carl James Associates Thomas Whelehan.

According to our reader, back in 2009/10, he was having some problems with Resort Properties (Silverpoint), this was over the resales of the “investment weeks” he had purchased. He travelled to Tenerife in an attempt to sort out the problem, unfortunately, all those he had dealt with before no longer worked there.

He was introduced to Maurice Aronow and Tom Whelehan who introduced himself as the “point of contact for resale problems”. Our reader was basically told (as we have heard from numerous readers) that “timeshare was no longer selling”, that they needed to move their investment into Club Paradiso or they would lose it all. A story we are very familiar with.

So the question is, even though the name Whelehan is not common, is this the very same Thomas Whelehan who is now director of Carl James Associates?

Well, Inside Timeshare believes it is, but we will let you the reader and time decide for us.

We then brought you the latest court victories from around the Canary Islands, with yet another Silverpoint appeal being dismissed along with a Club La Costa appeal to have a case dismissed by the courts on jurisdictional grounds.

We have reported on many occasions that Club La Costa has moved to have cases dismissed on these grounds, that their contract has a clause which states that the contract is subject to UK law and the jurisdiction of UK courts. This has been thrown out several times by the High Court on the fact the contract was signed and paid for in Spain and therefore Spanish law applies. Now it appears even the Courts of First Instance are following these rulings made by the High Court.

Anfi was also on the receiving end of several verdicts and losing appeals in the High Court, today we publish yet another defeat for Anfi.

Swedish clients of Canarian Legal Alliance will now be receiving 21,416€ into their bank account as a result of a provisional embargo which was submitted to the court so the client’s award which totals 32,948€ is secured.

We are now familiar with these embargoes being submitted and it has become standard practice for CLA to submit these applications on behalf of the clients. We are all very well aware that Anfi will try every trick in the book to avoid paying including the moving of funds between accounts. We also expect that as usual Anfi will appeal and yes, we know they will lose.

The interim amount is from a tax refund that CLA became aware of and they managed to obtain an embargo on those funds. It is also from this embargo that the funds for another client have been recovered.

Once again it is Eva Gutierrez who is behind the investigations into locating hidden funds, not just a great lawyer but turning into a great detective as well.

All we can say to Anfi at this point is, Why don’t you just give up and payout, it costs you more in the end to fight and we all know that is one fight you are going to lose every time.

That is all for this week, have a great weekend and join us again next week.

End the Week

It’s Friday again and the weekend beckons, so to end this week Inside Timeshare has a quick look back at the articles published with a rather interesting update on one of them. There has also been a report in the Daily Mirror on another “claims & exit” company being taken to court by a disgruntled client. Although this particular company has not yet featured on the pages of Inside Timeshare, several of the companies they are associated with have been.

We begin with the first two articles published this week, Club La Costa: Timeshare versus Independent Booking and Marriott: What Is Your Timeshare Worth.

The first article this week follows on from the previous articles where Inside Timeshare looked at the availability of timeshare resorts on independent booking websites. In all the articles it can be seen that many of these timeshare resorts are open to bookings from non-members and that in most cases the cost is far lower than the annual maintenance fees being paid by members.

The average maintenance fee paid by CLC members is around 1,300€ for points worth the equivalent of a one week stay in a 1-bed apartment or studio, a figure that goes up each year and increases with the number of points owned. This article showed a 1 bedroom apartment sleeping 4 adults for 7 nights at the CLC Monterey Resort in Tenerife.

This was available for the period 6 November to 13 November 2020 on Apartments4u, the cost was a very low 553.79€ or just 19.77€ per person per night. This is half the amount a member will be paying in annual fees, is this right?

Our second article then looked at Marriott and what the value is on the resale market for those wanting to be timeshare free.

Unfortunately, the true value is a lot less than what was paid to purchase it in the first place, contrary to what the salespeople may have said it does not go up in value, it actually falls drastically. We found quite a variance in prices from 1000€ for a 1 or 2 bed Silver all the way to 18,000€ for a 3-bed platinum week.

It must be said that the majority on sale were all around the 1000€ price tag, the higher prices are what the owner who is trying to sell still believes it is worth. Remember, when you purchase the timeshare in the first place, the majority of the price you paid (around 80%) was to pay for the sales and marketing team, the OPC’s, scratch cards, all costs involved at the presentation and all the admin staff in the contracts department.

So how much do you think your timeshare is worth?

Yesterday, Inside Timeshare published the latest incarnation of another member of the Litigious Abogados Family, Abogados El Paloma. As has always been the case, the website is an exact copy of all the previous ones, the only difference is the names of the so-called lawyers.

This time they have used the same pictures as were used by Torcaz Abogados and Paloma Abogados including the same picture of the founder Amador Dularta Colatamo. This same picture appeared as the founder of the two other “law” firms and was named as Fernando Olawza Garcia of Torcaz Abogados and Fernando Nialgan Torkas of Paloma Abogados, he is in fact Judge Dana Makoto Sabraw, for the United States District Court for the Southern District of California.

In the same article, we brought an update on an old “claims” company Verity Claims Ltd, although the company was actually dissolved in 2017, we revealed that the website https://www.verityclaims.co.uk/ was re-registered on 25 October 2018, almost 1 year after the company was officially dissolved.

But that is not all, the two directors Mr David Paul Sperring, Director I.D: 917228853 & Mr George Burbidge, Director I.D: 908798815, were actually jailed in 2017 for 3 years after admitting a scam that was worth over £300K in a claims compensation scam.

It turns out while Inside Timeshare was looking at this company in relation to claims against ILG and DWVC, they were also doing claims for mis-sold solar panels. It was this part of their enterprise that finally got them. So the question is who is now behind the website?

https://www.nationaltradingstandards.uk/news/directors-jailed-for-300k-plus-claims-scam/

Yesterday the Daily Mirror published the story of a UK couple who own Club La Costa taking to court a “claims & exit” company. Although as yet this company has not appeared on these pages, their associates have done.

The company is Carl James Associates Ltd, Company Registration 09886619, with the registered address:

71-75 Shelton Street, Covent Garden, London, United Kingdom, WC2H 9JQ

This address has been used by so many companies involved in various timeshare schemes it always gets alarm bells ringing.

The director is Thomas Whelehan who has been the sole director since the company was incorporated in November 2015.

It seems that the “client” wanted an exit from his CLC membership, he paid Carl James Associates £4,200 for them to do this work. The client had not yet signed a contract or even given them any of his documents. He decided to cancel and wanted his money back. This was refused.

According to Carl James, the work to do the cancellation had been passed to Fullbrook Associates of Sterling, a name we are familiar with as they also work hand in hand with Claims Solutions Group of Aberfeldy and Meridian Associates based in Tenerife.

The other link which does not look good is the “consultant” who spoke with the client, Gerald Tiernan who it turns out was once the Sales and Marketing Manager at Eze Group. A link that is not lost on us.

When the Mirror spoke with Club La Costa the Operations Director Guy Mantel explained that CLC will allow members to exit free of charge, provided that maintenance was paid to date, he also stated:

“Members can simply contact our CLC World Member Services department to enquire on this policy and be guided through the process if required.”

“Claims management companies we believe are fully aware of our policy in this matter yet continue to misrepresent the situation and persuade our members to payout fees, in some cases sizable amounts in the thousands, for a service that is not required.”

So there you have it, All these “exit” companies are very aware that Club La Costa will allow their members out free of charge yet still continue to use every falsehood going to get you the member to part with your money.

See the link for the full story.

https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/club-la-costa-couple-fight-22732136

Well, that is all for this week, have a great weekend and join us again next week for more about the murky world of timeshare.

Start the Week: Another Fake Law Firm Comes to Light

Welcome to the start of another week with Inside Timeshare, as our regular readers know, Inside Timeshare is always quick to report the latest names to emerge with regards to timeshare claims and exit. Today we highlight yet another “fake” law firm to come to our attention, this time it is not directly from a reader but the Timeshare Consumer Association. They contacted Inside Timeshare to find out if we had ever heard of this “law firm” and what we thought of the letter they had received from a concerned consumer.

As some of our readers are now aware, Inside Timeshare has been collaborating with the TCA by sharing information on the proliferation of “fake” law firms and claims companies. The latest is called Sanchez Abogados Services, claiming to be “Legal Services & Re-claim Specialists”.

So far, Inside Timeshare or the TCA have not found any “law” firm with this name, there are two which we have found with similar names based in Barcelona and Murcia. Both are genuine law firms and have nothing to do with any timeshare cases.

The letter received by the consumer gives no company details, address, telephone number or website, but does have an email address:

[email protected]

Once again it is a free Gmail account which anybody can set up, not what you would expect from any genuine law firm.

The letter itself is what can only be described as familiar and not very business-like, it does not even begin with Dear Mr or Mrs, but “Good Morning, Thanks again for getting in touch”. It then begins:

“Ok, I’m going to explain how the process works and let you know the costs/fees involved…What you read here is 100% correct and not a penny more than the amount quoted.”

It then goes on to say:

“Firstly, I would like to mention that we do not expect any of our processing fee/payment to be paid upfront or during the process.”

So far so good, but then they require the client to make a refundable “surety deposit” amounting to £185 to begin the process which is “refundable” in full after “7 days” on completion. 

The letter goes on to explain the reason for this “surety deposit”, it seems that “people” have not been paying them once the claim is processed on a “no win no fee” basis:

“We have had problems with a few people over this..Basically the management are hoping the surety payment may deter this sort of thing from happening again and encourage people to stay around for the duration of their claim.”

Again not very business-like, they want the client to trust them but they don’t trust the client!

The basis of the claim is a purchase with Eze Group with a Timeshare being taken from them so they are then maintenance-free. We have seen this with many of these discount holiday clubs, credit-based clubs such as Monster Credits etc. In other words, the only way you the consumer can get out of your timeshare is to purchase our product and we will take over your timeshare.

It appears that these people also know the exact date the purchase with Eze Group was made as they actually place that in the letter along with the exact amount paid. Again, something does not seem right here, how have they managed to get that information?

This could be yours!

The total amount for the claim is £21,215, plus according to Sanchez Abogados they are also “entitled to 10% of this amount as a form of compensation”. This amounts to £23,336. Apparently, this is due to the amount of time the client has waited. Waited for what we ask as the client did not instigate any legal action or claim?

The letter then goes on about “fees/your payment to us”, where they “actually have 3 payment options”. Apparently 2 of these involve upfront payments, “so we will concentrate on option 3 where no upfront payment is needed”.

The processing fee will be £750, but the £185 initial surety payment will be deducted from this leaving £565 which will be invoiced once the “claim funds have cleared in your bank”.

They certainly work very fast as they say the claim will be completed within 10 days, apparently, this is down to the “amount of time the court allows us to process a claim”. It then goes to say “as you know we are at the end of the Eze Group claims so this is more likely to be 6 or 7 days”.

Payment made by the client at the start or during the process will be payable to a “third party, UK Escrow, holding account”.  Apparently this account has been verified by the High Court.

In order to give the “client” some peace of mind, the funds are not accessible by them and are held for a maximum of 10 days, if they (Sanchez) do not complete within the 10 days the funds will be returned to the client. What funds are we talking about, the claim amount or what?

It also goes on to say:

“All monies that you will be receiving are being settled to you by the successful outcome of recent court proceedings against Regency Shores (Eze Group) Holdings SL, where upon you were listed as one of their members.”

“All monies and procedure are contractually and fiscally guaranteed by our long standing relationship with the High Court In Madrid and the Central Bank of Spain.”

So they have a long-standing relationship with the High Court in Madrid and the Central Bank of Spain. Wonderful credentials if they were true.

In the closing paragraphs they also state that they are now “out of time” for claims against Eze Group, but wait a minute, “the court does normally allow us a couple of days grace”. Isn’t that lovely of the court!

In the same paragraph, they also advise the client to “get your foot in the door”!

The letter ends:

“If you need any assistance in the future please do contact us. 

Any questions, please ask..sorry if I’ve made it sound complicated..sometimes think I go into to much detail 😚”

“We look forward to your reply,”

“Have a lovely day,”

“Warm Regards,”

“Ms Maria Santos (Admin)”

The footer of the page has these wonderful words to end with:

DON’T BE ANOTHER VICTIM, ACT NOW AND CLAIM BACK WHAT IS RIGHTFULLY YOURS!

Please note any spelling mistakes etc are direct from the letter.

We just love the part where Maria Santos apologises for making it sound complicated and that she thinks she goes into too much detail. Well we know the reason for that, make it complicated so it confuses the clients, most of which are going to be elderly pensioners!

So to recap, a law firm that cannot be traced, a free Gmail account, no company address, company registration number, lawyers bar association numbers or names and no website.

All the details you would expect from a legitimate and genuine law firm, our conclusion, yet another scam with the lure of thousands coming your way.

Once again this reinforces what Inside Timeshare has been saying for years, do not believe what you are told in cold calls, unsolicited emails or normal post. Check and check again, if you don’t know where to start or how to make these checks, then contact Inside Timeshare using our contact page and we will help you get started.

DO YOUR HOMEWORK, YOU KNOW IT MAKES SENSE!