By Eloise Horsfield

A SCOTTISH couple is among 300 investors still waiting for their dream home in Morocco five years after parting with a hefty deposit.

Craig Menzies, 40, and wife Elaine, 42, handed over €35,000 in 2007 for an off-plan unit at Playa Vista, a large development on Morocco’s Mediterranean coast.

The couple was told the new complex in Cabo Negro – boasting ocean views, a secluded beach and marina – would be ready at the end of 2008, with the remaining balance of €44,800 due on completion.

However in November that year they received a notice saying a ‘stop work order’ had been issued by the Moroccan government.

“We understand this was due to the authorities being unhappy with the number of properties being built and pressures on water supply and other natural resources,” said Menzies, a software tester who lives in Alhaurin el Grande.

“They confirmed they were holding meetings with Moroccan officials and they hoped to reach an agreement with them to recommence construction,” he said.

But with still no sign of any movement almost five years after signing up, Menzies contacted the Olive Press.

Then, in May this year, Playa Vista announced it had some ‘good news’, and that a start date had been confirmed for July 30.

But Menzies, from West Lothian, remains sceptical: “This is not the first time we have had notices like this.

“We also received notification almost a month ago that we would receive individual packs outlining the details relating to our specific circumstance but so far it has failed to materialise.”

The Olive Press has since received similar testimonies from several investors in Spain, France and the UK, including 52-year-old Karen Cleary from Hampshire who has failed to get her €48,000 deposit back.

“I am of the opinion that this is a complete scam and that they should be arrested for keeping our money for so long,” she told the Olive Press.

“It’s all lies.”

Meanwhile other investors accused Playa Vista of avoiding returning deposits to investors by ‘hiding behind an open clause in the contract’ and moving the completion date forward.

When contacted by the Olive Press, Playa Vista said there would be options for clients who wished for their deposits to be returned and admitted it could be more ‘efficient and effective’ in its communications.

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  1. I too unfortunately, lost money with compass. I have almost given up trying to get any of it back! Firstly, their websites should be removed from advertising these non existent properties.

    Maybe, we can all get a petition to the king of morocco and express our angry as to why he continues to ignore this scam, and the fact could be he was paid a handsome amount from compass for the agreement of this development!

    It is also not good for Morocco’s economy, I somehow, feel they are all laughing and had no intentions of opening up their country too anyone!!

    It goes back to the saying “if its too good to be true”, we all now the rest!

  2. I know Cabo Negro well, and such a project there looks fishy. I wonder how careful your investors are, with whom were they dealing? Compass Properties is a U.S. company in Wisconsin, and as far as I know they have no activity here, so these guys who sold dreams are certainly crooks, I tried to find out something about them, they have an address in Tangier, an apartment, they use the name “Compass Properties” and they say their head office is in Barbados, I checked, it’s fiction!

  3. Hi I too have been involved with Compass and we need to go to a solicitor together with others I have spoken to Snyder and he is owed money also. You need to make sure you register your property with the government through a solicitor so that when they go to sell them on they have to pay us first. If you contact me I will give you the name of the solicitor I am about to use.

  4. Sorry to see so many trusting people have fallen for yet another property scam and have made payments for unfinished properties. Would I make final payments, I doubt it since I’d be very nervous about buying any property now in North Africa due to the spread of Isis? So, all those who invested should somehow seek redress and repayment of funds rather than make final payments IMO.

  5. I to have been involved in this fraud with Compass properties and also paradise golf & beach resort i paid 5 deposits 9 yrs ago and still no developments by the developer Atlantic beach paradise resort S.A.R.L AND ALSO WOULD WELCOME NAME OF A TRUSTED SOLICITOR TKS

  6. There has been press re paradise golf and beach resort.
    The developer has been in prison since Feb 2016
    There also appears to be a group supporting the developer …
    There are a number of investors who have a core team

  7. Hi everyone who has been effected by this scam . I previously mentioned I too was duped into this Moroccan investment , but I have found some light at the end of the tunnel . I have contacted a law firm in the UK that deals with cases like this , its a no win no fee case , they are dealing with 2 of my cases/ investment . If you had to remortgage or not for your investment in morocco please contact
    21 the parade
    KT10 0PD
    Tele 01372466376
    Mob. 07801400862. Fax 07092846918
    I have been dealing with Scott , trust me its worth trying to get some of your investment back . If you require to contact me my mob is
    07969951802 or email me on

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