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Stories about breaking the law!

Caller ID Called Their Bluff

, , , , | Legal | December 1, 2022

My phone rings and the number comes up on my display.

Me: “Hello?”

Caller: *In English* “Hello, I’m calling from Europol. Your ID documents are involved in a crime, and in order to avoid criminal charges, I need you to follow my instructions.”

Europol, the European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation, is headquartered in the Netherlands.

Me: “If you’re from Europol, why are you calling from a German mobile number?”

Caller: *Click*

Strangest scam call ever.

We’d Say What We Think, But He’d Probably Write About Us, Too

, , , , | Legal | November 29, 2022

I manage websites and recently one client faxed me some handwritten copy to add to the news section of his site.

In the article, he laid into a rival company that had recently appeared in court and been acquitted of supplying faulty goods. Describing the company as “cheats” who got off because “their sleazy lawyers lied” was one of his milder claims.

Me: “I’ve read your copy and I have some concerns. Under the ‘contentious content’ clause of our contract, I’m going to hold off on putting this on the website until your lawyers approve it.”

Client: “Fine! I’ll put them in touch.”

Later that day, I got an email from his lawyers asking for a copy of the article in question. I sent it, and twenty minutes later, I got their response. It turns out that his lawyers were the same that had defended his rival company.

Client’s Lawyer: “We have considered the copy you forwarded to us regarding a recent court case in which we successfully defended one of our clients against a wholly false claim of supplying defective goods. We have advised [Client] that his article is, in our opinion, factually flawed, libelous, and unsuitable for publication, and we are consequently unable to indemnify it in line with your contract.”

Client’s Lawyer: “Please note that we no longer act for [Client] in any capacity.”

When I wrote the client to tell him that his (former) lawyers said that he should IN NO WAY have this article published, he wrote me back.

Client: “Run it! I’m not going to be bossed about by sleazy lawyers.”

Me: “No.”

That ended our business relationship, except that two days later he accidentally faxed me some new copy. In it, he railed against “sleazy website managers.”

When They Act Tough, You Call Their Bluff, Part 3

, , , , , , , | Legal | November 27, 2022

I had a brief stint working as a barman in one of Glasgow’s trendier pubs, and as I didn’t drive at the time, I relied on buses to get to and from work. I met some interesting characters on the night buses after midnight, but this story is about the one time somebody tried to mug me, and I’m only telling it because it was utterly bizarre.

After one particularly long shift, followed by a drink with my colleagues, it was about 1:00 am, and I was mentally and physically exhausted. I was standing at my usual bus stop listening to music on my headphones. After a few minutes, somebody walked over, stood in front of me, and smirked at me from an uncomfortably close distance. 

Me: “What is it?”

Would-Be-Mugger: “Phone, wallet, headphones. Now.”

Now, I don’t recommend what I did next but, as I said, it had been a long day and the guy didn’t have any obvious weapon.

Me: “F*** off.”

Would-Be-Mugger: “What?!”

Me: “You heard me. F*** off.”

I was ready for a fight at this point, so I had taken my headphones off, but I wasn’t expecting what happened next.

Would-Be-Mugger: “Oh, umm, hahaha! I nearly got you?! Aye, you’re right. I watched a show today about a guy who pretended to mug people just to see what reaction they would get, but you’re right. It’s late, it’s dark, and people are going to think I’m serious. Would you like some chewing gum, by the way?”

Me: “No, I don’t want any chewing gum. Get lost.”

He ran off down the street, never to be seen again. It was a bizarre end to a long shift.

Related:
When They Act Tough, You Call Their Bluff, Part 2
When They Act Tough, You Call Their Bluff

Tell Us Where This Hotel Is So We Can Never, Ever Stay There

, , , , , | Legal | CREDIT: BecentiComposer | November 24, 2022

I work in a hotel. A week or so ago, a newly hired housekeeper found a .357 Magnum with the hammer cocked in one of the rooms and freaked out. She called the head housekeeper, who grabbed it without gloves (she got in trouble for that) and took it to the office. The police were called and they took it away.

Our hotel is a budget hotel and used to be a lot worse where violence, drugs, sex work, and crime in general are concerned. Our new management has been cracking down on that and issuing Do-Not-Rents as necessary — a lot, sadly. The last gun violence that occurred here was two years ago when a murder fugitive had a shootout with police and died. Since then, we’ve had the occasional high-strung guest point a gun at staff, but nothing beyond that.

Today, a young guy with multiple facial tattoos walks in. There is a ton of cursing on his side but I’m not going to type that all out; it’s in nearly every sentence.

Guy: “I stayed in room last week, and I forgot my gun. I need it back.”

Me: “Okay. Can I have your ID, please?”

I know the room wasn’t registered to him; it was registered to a single female with no other guests listed.

Guy: “Why? I just need my gun back.”

Me: “I need to verify your identity before I can give out information for your room, sir, for security purposes.”

Guy: “What?! That’s stupid. I forgot my gun. I told you it was there, and I know you have it. No one else asked you for a gun, just me, so why do I need an ID?”

Me: “Again, sir, it’s for security purposes and the safety of our guests. I am not allowed to release private information to anyone other than the registered guests. I am not going to violate that policy, especially where firearms are concerned. If you cannot produce a valid ID, I cannot release any information. I’m sorry.”

Guy: “I know you have my gun, and you’re not going to give it to me. That’s stealing! I’m going to stand here until you give me back my property.”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but we don’t allow loitering.”

Guy: “I’m not loitering! You’re not giving me my stuff!”

Me: “Sir, I’m going to have to ask you to leave before I call the police and have them escort you off the property.”

Guy: “Then call them! I don’t care!”

So, I called them, and they arrived fairly quickly. After forty-five minutes or so, they arrested him and took him away. I’m guessing he either had a warrant or was a felon in possession of a firearm. I’m not sure why it took so long to identify him, though.

Did You Just Dare Me To Take You To Court?

, , , , , , , | Legal | CREDIT: theb00kmancometh | November 20, 2022

This incident took place in India in the late 1980s and early ‘90s. The school where my sister and I studied was in my hometown. We knew almost all of the teachers since they were practically our neighbours.

By the time I graduated from school, the principal had retired and the vice principal had taken over as the principal.

[Vice Principal] was also from the same town, and for some unknown reason, he had some sort of grudge against my father. In local gatherings and such, he would always try to belittle my father at all chances he could get. My father would normally let it pass since he knows that getting into silly arguments with such a bully is totally unproductive.

When my sister and I joined the school, my father was required to pay a refundable deposit of 5,000 Rupees per child, which would be returned when each child graduated from the school. 10,000 Rupees was a large amount in the ‘90s and is equivalent to 95,000 Rupees now.

I graduated in 1989. My father enquired about the refund.

Vice Principal: “Since [Sister] will be graduating next year, both of the deposits will be returned together.”

When my sister graduated from school, my father requested that the school refund both of the deposits. There was no response, even after two weeks, and my father personally went to the school to demand the refund. [Vice Principal], being the egotistical bully, started arguing with my father stating that the school couldn’t refund the deposits. The argument became very heated, and he refused point-blank.

Vice Principal: “We are not returning the deposits. Do what you want. You can take us to court if you want!”

My father went silent, got up, and left the school. He came home, sat down with Mom, and went through all the school-related documents she had kept. My mom had a very meticulous documentation system; she used to save every receipt, bill, stub, etc.

He found the receipts for the deposits and took them to his lawyer friend. My dad informed his friends whose children were in the same school about the issue.

The lawyer filed the case and took the school to court. The school couldn’t provide any reason for withholding the deposits, so my dad won. The school was instructed to pay back the deposits with interest, as well as court dues.

My father’s friends who were in the PTA took up the issue in the subsequent PTA meeting, and they got the school’s trustee board to ensure that such issues wouldn’t be dealt with in the same manner. All deposits would be refunded in time. They strictly warned [Vice Principal] not to bring personal grudges into school business.

Other parents who were owed deposits but had forgotten about them started claiming them. It cost the school a lot to pay back all the deposits.