by Isi Esene
Some of you might have seen the funny but bizarre inscription on a house somewhere in the Lagos metropolis with the inscription: “This house is not for sale! Beware of 419, and my son, Kamoru”.
The warning must have been necessitated by the activities of individuals who claim to be landlords of vacant houses only to disappear into thin air after duping unsuspecting prospective tenants of their money.
Surprisingly, this was the case in Atlanta, when a mother of twelve, Tocco Collins, learned, after parting with thousands of dollars, that the ‘landlord’ she had been paying $600 a month in rent didn’t own the house and had also skipped town.
The actual owner had no idea her home had being rented out.
The fake landlord who had promised Collins to fix the house’s holes, broken windows and burned out light box failed to show up to deliver on his promise which made her suspect a foul-play.
“Step by step, I’m trying to make some effort,” Collins told CBS Atlanta. “Right now I’m lost.”
Last month, Eric Sisson, a homeless Florida man, got two young women to release over $1,375 for a foreclosed vacant home after posting an Ad on Craiglist, according to Daily Mail reports.
One of the women, smelling something fishy, went to the police, who reached out to the home’s actual owner and later arrested Sisson.
Collins, the Atlanta mother and her children, were not that lucky, but members of Occupy Atlanta are raising money for the family to buy a new home, and volunteers said they would help renovate the new residence after it’s secured.
Perhaps Kamoru’s mother can now rest, assured that he is now in Atlanta?