Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Doing Business with the help of the police

Here is a "great story" of a friend - He told it to me just told me a few days ago - it sounds more like a bad Hollywood movie, but is real:

He, like many Brazilians is heavily invested in the property market and had a storefront he was renting out. One day he got an offer from a guy wanting to open a bakery. They struck a deal that the baker would not pay the first months rent but would heavily invest in upgrading the place.

On day 10 of the second month the rent was not paid, nor the property taxes, nor the condominium fees. My friend called the baker who gave a lame excuse but paid the next day.

On day 10 of the third month the rent wasn't paid again. This time my friend could not talk to the baker, checked around for him but could not find him anywhere. So he contacted a lawyer and told him to solve it.

All of this lead to only limited success and the bakery remained open but the baker was never there and the rent was not paid... for several months in a row.

This friend of mine also had a buddy that worked at Garra, an elite unit of the civil police (with a reputation of being pretty violent). They played football together and one evening after a game and during beers, my friend told his police buddy about this. The buddy got interested and asked more questions and my friend told him all he knew about the case, including that he also knew that the baker had a daughter that studied medicine at the XYZ-university. "A daughter at the XYZ-University, eh?" the cop asked... "Ok, don't worry about your baker anymore."

Eight days later the rent, property taxes, condominium fees and overdue interest of the whole period was paid... and the key was returned in an envelope into my friend's mailbox. The bakery was vacated but painted beforehand and left in pristine condition, with a brand new hardwood floor.

My friend did not ask the cop what happened - he did not want to know and has not asked since. However, what he does know is that most likely has a debt somewhere and hopes that he never has to pay up.

BTW: To get a feeling about what police means, check google for what you get when you search for "policia" and "brasil". Then compare it when you search for "polizei" and "deutschland".

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