Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Michael Forbes vs. the Billionaire

Here's the gist of it:
For 40 years, Michael Forbes has lived a quiet life netting salmon every summer like his father and grandfather before him. His rambling old farm nestles behind a rampart of vast sand dunes which protect his rusting tractors and ramshackle sheds from the winds that whip in from the North Sea.

But those dunes are coveted by the billionaire property developer Donald Trump, as the centrepiece of his plans to create the "world's greatest golf course" - a £500m project to plant an eight- storey five-star hotel, two championship golf courses and 950 timeshare holiday flats on the coast of Aberdeenshire.

So the basic story is that he won't sell and that his land sits smack dab in the middle of the resort. But this is the bit that stuck out at me:
Ever since he refused to sell his home, 13 miles north of Aberdeen, Mr Forbes claims he has had a series of visits: environmental health officers and animal cruelty inspectors have arrived to check on the animals, and the police have asked him about his alleged possession of an unlicensed shotgun - a weapon he does not own. He has also had lawyers' letters accusing him of damaging Mr Trump's property, which he denies. These visits could be a coincidence, he adds, but he believes the pressure to sell will intensify.

If true, this is absolutely outrageous. If the local authorities are that deep in Trump's pockets, this needs to be investigated by national authorities.

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