In this Criminal Digest you will learn the details of a drunk driving incident and a real estate broker scam.
Drunk to the point of having no memory of her accident.
What a ride for this young Mentonnaise of 31 years! After getting intoxicated at the Stars’n’Bars with three glasses of rosé wine and a shot of spirits, this education assistant continued her evening of drinking at Gerhard’s Café. To the point of no longer having the slightest memory of the quantity of drinks absorbed. Inebriated, transformed into a zombie on 13 April, the young lady drove her Ford home. Ten minutes later, policemen on duty at the Place des Moulins, saw the vehicle pass with an unusual detail: a front tire was punctured. They warned their colleagues at the Saint Roman interchange. The car was intercepted and the officials noticed the drunkenness of the driver. A level of 1.1 mg was displayed on the device, i.e. 2.20 g of alcohol in the blood. At the bar of the court, the accused explained herself through sobs and hot tears, certainly frightened by the decision to suppress her offense.
“Video surveillance captures your journey when you started from the Jean Charles-Rey wharf,” stated President Jérôme Fougeras-Lavergnolle. “Then you exited the field of vision at Columbus where you reappear at the level of the church of St. Nicholas. You had an accident between these two sites. You could have gone home by taxi.” The accused was unable to provide any information.
“A friend told me I had hit a post. But I have no memory of the crash.” The accused paused and stated, in tears: “I have a stable job that I love! I’m sorry! I have been very lucky!” Luck! A word repeated by the prosecutor Cyrielle Colle.
“This young woman must realise that she is not at this hearing with a defendable position. What should we do to make people understand the danger of alcohol from even a few drinks? The appropriate sanction is a suspended sentence and a threat of two to three months of imprisonment above her head.”
The judges would be less severe in relation to the requisitions of the public prosecutor, with a month of possible imprisonment.
Real estate broker scam
As part of the sale of a four-room apartment, a real estate broker deposited in her personal account the totality of agency fees. This breach of confidence, for the Court of Appeal, she was sentenced to eight months’ imprisonment with suspended sentence and ordered to pay 15,000 euros to the civil party, the employee of a real estate agency in Monte Carlo, reduced by the Court of Appeal.
After considering the dispute, the judgment reduced the penalty to a fine of 15,000 euros and a sum of 5,000 euros for the company Elite International. In this case of breach of trust, the public prosecutor’s office had twice asked for a dismissal. In this case, this fifty-something-year-old Monegasque wife of a very high-ranking official oversaw the sale of a four-room apartment at “Château Périgord” in the spring of 2013. Of the amount of the transaction, she noticed the agency commission. The broker asks the purchaser to deposit the fees in her name. And she deposited the entire sum, i.e. 156,676 euros, in her personal bank account “to preserve her rights to her portion of the fees,” she said before Judge Eric Senna.
“Why did you do that? You were not entitled to all of it. What were you afraid of in order to take everything into account?”asked the magistrate. “I never wanted to rob or harm anyone,” the intermediary replied. “But at that time, the accounts were blocked with the death of the owner and I was afraid of not being paid. I had no information…” Lies? Truth? “But these fees were due to the agency that then pays you a commission. Is not it abnormal?” the Judge asked. “Not at all. I paid my employer’s quota,” according to the attorney. For the civil party, Jean Pierre Licari evoked “a series of lies. This person had no reason to cash the deposit cheque in her personal account. My client noticed the scam when it was necessary to pay VAT… And let’s be serious: who would give 80% of the sum to an employee? It’s ruinous! It’s just enough to pay the taxes. Usually it’s 20% for the broker, 80% for the agency. In this case, the opposite is true. Fraudulent intent exists. Make her pay the full amount claimed.”
However, for Attorney General Jacques Dorémieux, “there is no material basis to justify an offense. It is not for that lady to provide the evidence, but for the complaining party. The Crown is not blind. Doubt must benefit the commissionaire. There must be leniency!” The defence lawyers stated their belief “in the pacifying force of law. Let us apply the law and it is impossible for our client to have committed an abuse of trust. The 80% distribution for Madame and 20% for the agency is fair. It corresponds to the work done and the internal agreement dates back to the 1990s. There is no evidence to support the contention of the complainant’s counsel. And no economic damage suffered by the SARL.” The lawyer then described the accused as “an honest, reserved woman who was raised by a trustworthy civil servant father. She is incapable of committing an offense.” The Court of Appeal would decide otherwise.
Thus in this Top of criminal Monaco news the details of a drunk driving incident and a scam by a broker should serve as a warning to any considering taking the wheel after drinks or taking money that is not theirs.