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#455112 - 01/13/13 07:37 AM Couple didn’t get Condo and attorney returned fee
Marty Offline

John Engelhardt

There is a serious allegation against a prominent attorney tonight. A couple from Michigan in the US is accusing attorney Arthur Saldivar of accepting payment, but not delivering services. The couple, John and Cynthia Engelhardt, claim that they paid Saldivar thirteen thousand dollars to process their title for a condo in San Pedro. That was years ago, but today the couple said they had not received any title to the condo nor have they been able to contact Saldivar.

John Engelhardt, Aggrieved Condo Owner

“Over three years ago, when we purchased down here, we used attorney Arthur Saldivar to take care of our title work. He assured us that we would have our titles within four weeks after we paid our stamp duty tax and his fees to him, which we did. It is now 2013, we still have not received title and Mr. Saldivar repeatedly fails to answer or correspond with us in any way shape or form. We have emailed him numerous times and he fails to reply back. So we’re really lost and we know we’re not the only ones in this position.”

Cynthia Engelhardt, Aggrieved Condo Owner

“It’s about six thousand, five hundred for us. However, we know about other people who are in to the nine and ten thousand. There are ten of us that I know of that are in this situation so we’re talking about you know somewhere between seventy-five and a hundred thousand dollars that Mr. Saldivar has taken from us.”

Jorge Aldana, San Pedro Sun

“US or Belize?”

Cynthia Engelhardt

Cynthia Engelhardt

“This is US. And that was another issue. I didn’t realize and it’s my ignorance I admit, that on our title transfer when we purchased our condo for a hundred and fifteen, that was US dollars and apparently if it isn’t identified as US on the document, that’s Belizean. So I’m very confused.”

John Engelhardt

“In other words, what my wife is trying to say is that a hundred and fifteen on the agreement for sale would have been turned into the Lands Department. Yet, Mr. Saldivar collected US dollars from us for the title transfer?”

Jorge Aldana

“How much did he charge you, percentage wise?”

Cynthia Engelhardt

“One percent.”

Since we conducted that interview, News Five spoke to Saldivar and he says the matter has been settled with the Englehardts. According to Saldivar, he intended to get the titles, but at the time the documents were blocked by the Lands Department because of a dispute between the landowner and the homeowners association. He says that was the cause of the delay, but that he has committed to returning the money to all the condo owners.

Channel 5

#455118 - 01/13/13 07:49 AM Re: Couple didn’t get Condo and attorney returned fee [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Another American Accuses Attorney Arthur Saldivar

In July of last year we told you about Richard Gentry, a retired US attorney who claimed that his local lawyer, Arthur Saldivar had defrauded him of $13,900.00 dollars. It was to pay stamp duty so that Gentry could get clear title for the Condo unit he was living on at Reef Village in San Pedro. Years passed, no title was forthcoming and, neither was any refund or disciplinary action. So Gentry came to 7news - and according to reports - he did end up getting his refund.

And that's the same thing that a retired couple from Michigan want. They got caught in the same bad deal - and today in San Pedro they told us that they paid Saldivar $6,500 US dollars three years ago - and have not gotten title or their money back. They said that they had no choice but to come to the media:..

John Englehardt
"We retained his service in order to obtained title for our condo and he assured us that we will have our title within 4 weeks after we pay our stamp duty tax and his fees to him which we did. It is now 2013 and we still haven't received title and Mr. Saldivar repeatedly fails to answer or correspond with us in any way shape or form. We have emailed him numerous times and he fails to reply back, so we are lost and we are not the only ones in this position."

Cynthia Englehardt
"There are 10 of us that I know of that are in this situation, so we talking somewhere between $75,000 - $100,000 that Mr. Saldivar has taken from us."

John Englehardt
"I tried to call him from the US in last year and no return call."

Cynthia Englehardt
"The primary mode of conversation has been via email. At first in 2010 when we initiated this he was communicating back and forth but when it became apparent that there was an issue he drop communications. At this juncture I really don't know where to turn which is why we came to you people - can you help us? We are not the only people that I believe that this man has taken advantage of. We are not affluent Americans; we are all hard working people. This was our retirement and our dream and he has taken that away from us."

As we understand it, there is no strata plan in place, meaning that clear title cannot be obtained. We did call Saldivar today who told us that he will return money to them and others, but, quote, "it is a process." He adds that titles for those properties are still not being given. As for being incommunicado with the couple since 2010, he tells us that he responded to their email just yesterday - a claim with the Englehardt's deny.

Channel 7

#455124 - 01/13/13 09:30 AM Re: Couple didn’t get Condo and attorney returned fee [Re: Marty]
SnowWhite5080 Offline
What I have read about Arthur Saldivar he has been involved with other shady deals with the developer of RV. Does anyone know if he is the attorney for it's developer? I wonder why they have let so much time pass when it comes to getting the media involved? The history of RV and it's developer needs to be kept out in front for all of the investors who are helping him get South Beach rekindled. I can't use names but all of us who is involved knows what I'm talking about. An employee of his informed me he has a new investor.

#455128 - 01/13/13 12:49 PM Re: Couple didn’t get Condo and attorney returned fee [Re: SnowWhite5080]
Sunny Reef Offline
It's very simple to understand why they never contacted the media: They wanted to protect their financial involvement into this project and were scared that the value of their investment would drop even more. Unfortunately that "opened the door" that more people had bad experiences and lost a lot of money.

It will also make it possible that South Beach will come and many more people will wake up much too late. As long as we allow this and shut up it's fine and absolutely OK!
Again another beautiful day in paradise - just smile and be happy :-)

#455150 - 01/13/13 08:15 PM Re: Couple didn’t get Condo and attorney returned fee [Re: Marty]
SnowWhite5080 Offline
Maybe so SR, yet I can't help but think that once they become wise enough to see through the smoke and mirrors the developer puts up and if they do their due diligence with their money they will find the gaps as a good investor will do.

As for "As long as 'we' allow this and shut up...." I couldn't agree more with you.
A strong man can handle a strong woman.
A weak man will say she has an attitude.

#455189 - 01/14/13 01:45 PM Re: Couple didn’t get Condo and attorney returned fee [Re: Marty]
Belize Fly Offline
Just so everyon knows Saldivar contacted us on Friday at 15:30 and said that we would have our money by the end of the month only after he was contacted by the news media after our interviev Salviday has not communicated with us since 2010 even though we sent him numerous e-mails that went unanswered. We aalso sent him a followup e-mail about our conversation with no response from him.
Saldivar stated to the news media that this has been resolved but it hasen't. It will be resolved when we have money in hand.

#455248 - 01/15/13 08:05 AM Re: Couple didn’t get Condo and attorney returned fee [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Attorney Saldivar Says He Will Refund Monies

On Friday night you saw US Nationals John and Cynthia Englehardt complaining about attorney Arthur Saldivar. He was supposed to get them title for their Condo Unit when they paid him 6,500 US dollars three years ago. Since then, they have not gotten title nor have they gotten their money back. They took to the media to name and shame Saldivar - and today he responded. He did an interview at our studio where he explained that the bottleneck has been at the Lands Department:...

Arthur Saldivar
"There was a dispute between the land owner and the home owners association that basically developed shortly after the original strata plan was approved. When that happen the ministry took the view that as a result of the dispute they would actually freeze the issuance of titles. This affected a lot of people and it wasn't a situation where there was any negligence on the part of anybody in terms of trying to get these titles. Due to that this year or late last year I started the process of re-imbursing people because I don't want to hold anybody's' money. I have accepted now that the lands department will not get its act together. I believe Mr. Gentry was the first person who came forward and said that he didn't want his title anymore he wants his money back and that type of thing and I started that process."

"Now everybody is coming to say that they want their monies back, I don't have a problem with that, there is no dispute there. That is being done as we speak; people are getting their monies back."

Jules Vasquez
"How do you respond to the criticism that you don't answer mails, you don't answer calls, they can't reach you. The only way they can reach you is by going on the media."

Arthur Saldivar
"Well I guess they see me in the media enough - they figure I live here. I think this is the first time now coming out on the TV and saying it the process to re-imburse every person has started and that will be concluded shortly."

Shortly is apparently not immediately, as John Englehardt - who you saw on the news on Friday says Saldivar did call him on Friday and told him he would be re-imbursed at the end of the month.

Saldivar says he has about eight clients who could not get their title - and about 9 who did.

Channel 7

#455263 - 01/15/13 09:34 AM Re: Couple didn’t get Condo and attorney returned fee [Re: Marty]
Nobody You Know Offline
"Saldivar says he has about eight clients who could not get their title - and about 9 who did."
It is problematic when an attorney uses the word "about" when referring to clients and results...

#455378 - 01/16/13 12:10 PM Re: Couple didn’t get Condo and attorney returned fee [Re: Marty]
BelizeBreeze-US Offline
Keep at it. John. The squeeky wheel gets the grease, and you are doing the right thing! See you in a couple of weeks.
Steve and Jane B. / Belize Breeze

#455418 - 01/16/13 10:33 PM Re: Couple didn’t get Condo and attorney returned fee [Re: BelizeBreeze-US]
R.P. McMurphy Offline
Sorry to say we are in the same boat as the Engelharts and who are waiting, and waiting, and waiting for Arthur Saldivar to return our funds to us. We were told by Arthur that he would return our funds to us by the holidays (that was Christmas) then on Jan. 14th, then the 15th, then today.........guess what, still waiting. We've asked for our money to be returned to us many times (I have the documentation).

We'll see what tomorrow holds and I'm not betting on this either. We will keep you informed when Mr. Saldivar comes through.

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