• HLURB investigating title fraud charge

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    An accusation that titles to properties purchased from Alveo Land by a British national were falsified by the company will be investigated by the National Housing Land Use and Regulatory Board (HLURB), an attorney for plaintiff said over the weekend.

    Estafa complaints against executives and agents of Alveo have been filed and are under preliminary investigation by the Taguig City prosecutor’s office, Attorney Argee Guevara told The Manila Times in a text message.

    According to Guevara, HLURB regional director for the National Capital Region Alfredo Gil Tan directed Atty. Cesar Manuel, director of the HLURB Legal Services Group, to conduct an investigation into the case of British professor Andy Gudgeon and his wife Leonila, who claimed to have been victimized by Alveo executives and agents.

    HLURB is an agency under the Office of the President responsible for regulating the real estate industry, particularly involving residential real estate companies and business.

    According to the couple, they purchased five condominium units from Alveo in 2007 for a total sum of P10 million with an agreement to pay on an installment basis.

    After repeated requests for the titles to the properties, the couple alleged, officials of Alveo presented them with titles under fictitious names, and claimed that the couple had not paid for the properties. Gudgeon reportedly investigated the matter, and also discovered that the four company officials named in his complaint to the Taguig City prosecutor—Chief Executive Officer Robert Lao, sales director Peachy Pasana, and sales agents Marishel Mendiola and Carmina Cruz—allegedly arranged for notaries to create for them Special Powers of Attorney (SPA) to represent the couple.

    Gudgeon has filed a case of large-scale estafa and falsification of public documents before the Taguig City prosecutor’s office, and is seeking P55 million in damages, an email from Guevara explained.

    Alveo officials refused to elaborate on the case, except to say that they had no knowledge of the transactions involving Pasana and Mendiola or other agents of the company, and were cooperating fully with any investigations.

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