- Kenigsberg had been passed down a parcel of land from his late parents that he intended to keep undisturbed
- To his horror, the property was sold from under him by a scammer who impersonated him and raked in $350k from the illicit sale
- In a lawsuit, Kenigsberg is now asking for the property to be returned to him and to have a $1.4M home removed from the land that was erected since the fake sale
A man returned to his family’s Connecticut property after five years to find a $1.4m home being built on it after a scammer impersonated him to sell the land.
Dr Daniel Kenigsberg has owned the piece of property in Fairfield, Connecticut, after his late mother passed away in 2007.
The 0.45 acre lot remained covered in trees for seven decades after his parents Nathaniel and Esther bought an acre but only used half of it to build their home.
After selling the family home in 2011, Kenigsberg had plans to pass the empty lot, which is worth $350,000, down to his children and grandchildren.
In August 2022, however, the lot was sold without his knowledge when someone impersonating him signed a power of attorney to a solicitor, who authorized legal documents on his behalf and moved the property on to a real estate firm.
In a lawsuit, a Connecticut firm called 51 Sky Top Partners is said to have bought the land for $350,000 in October of last year – without Kenigsberg knowing it was ever up for sale.
A few months after this, they had a construction company begin building a four-bedroom house on the property, with the doctor still completely unaware.
The 4,000-square-foot house appeared for sale on Coldwell Banker in March for $1,475,000.
It wasn’t until May of this year that he heard anything, when a school friend called Kenigsberg to let him know that a fellow friend was receiving hospice care and mentioned the property being built on his land.
When he eventually made the trip and saw the home that had been built, Kenigsberg had his attorney look into what happened.
Kenigsberg told the Washington Post: ‘I was living my life normally until May 31st, and all of a sudden, this happened.’
According to the lawsuit, some unknown person from South Africa made a fake passport for Kenigsberg with an incorrect birthday, photo and address.
This person then had Connecticut lawyer Anthony Monelli execute the transaction after posing as Kenigsberg and appointing him as power of attorney.
After his attorney informed 51 Sky Top that they hadn’t purchased the property from the correct owner, construction stopped.
In a statement to The Washington Post, owner Gina Leto said: ‘We, as buyer, had no contact with the party impersonating Kenigsberg.
‘We had no reason to believe he was an impostor. We would not have paid $350,000 for the property — nor would we have invested hundreds of thousands of dollars more in construction — if we had.’
Leto is also said to be filing a request for the company to be removed from the lawsuit.
Kenigsberg filed the suit against Monelli and 51 Sky Top Partners on July 14 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut.
He has requested that he have the property returned to him, have all other parties involved to cease their activities on the land, and to remove the home they built.
Fairfield Police are also investigating the transaction.