Markets in everything, gypsy threat point edition

I do not read Italian, but Stefano offers me the following summary:

Gypsies exploit their bad reputation to make money. That's what happened in the provinces of Macerata, Ascoli Piceno and Ancona. A group of Gypsies coming from Veneto figured out an original way to swindle real estate agencies. Three of the Gypsies would show up at construction sites driving an expensive car and wearing nice clothes; they would get in touch with the sales office and and put down a down payment in cash for an apartment, sight unseen. After a couple of days they would then show up with their entire families, obstreperous and in tatters. This would trigger an immediate buy-back of the sale contract: the real estate agency would promptly pay back three times the amount of the down payment to get the apartment back (an apartment that the Gypsies did not in fact really want). Real estate agencies reporting this scheme to the police set in motion an investigation that resulted in three of the Gypsies being indicted for fraud. Their loot has been estimated around 300k Euros.

Here is the article.


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