doesn't have to hire an attorney....can file a theft complaint...might not stick, but may allow the guy to get his hives or can just sue the man in small claims court.....a handshake agreement isn't the best agreement, but it is a binding agreement...and any judge would side with the plaintiff.
Another thing crossed my mind, are the beehives even wortht the $5,000 he is trying to raise?
5,000 -:- 15 ='s $333.33 each, must be pretty close to the actual value, if not more. The beekeeper wants to get lawyers involved long as someone else pays for it. And how does he know that $5000 would be enough to finalise the matter.
Course I got sympathy for a guy wanting his bees back, but we don't know what the "other matter" was that got the landowner upset, and it's a virtual certainty this matter could be settled by cheap to free means, not involving lawyers. Unless there is another side to this story that we are not being told.
My attorney would write up a rather threatening "Notice of Intent" demanding the return of the property - explaining what will happen if it's not returned/allowed to be picked up within a certain amount of days. This would only be a couple hundred bucks and that's California pricing.
That's usually enough to get anything back. And yes, I'd also definitely file a report with the local police. Often times a Sheriff will be willing to contact the land owner explaining the property needs to be returned.
It does seem a little fishy though, asking for donations for what should be curable with a letter or a phone call.
For all you suspicious people I read about this in the news paper. The guy who owns the property is a wealthy business man who had a lawyer sent the guy who owns the bees a (disabled veteran who lives on less than 12,000.00 a year) a letter baring him from entering upon the property, With warning of criminal prosecution. When the guy who owns the bees called the police the property owner directed them to call his lawyer. The bee owner made a plea to simply get his bees. And the land owner is still fighting it. The bee owner needs a lawyer to file for an injunction and cannot get one without the retainer. I would Imagine the old guy is desperate. Ya he can file a suit in small claims court and in 6 weeks when the case is heard he may get his hives of dead bees back. Now I realize before he ever gets enough to pay the lawyer it will be too late. But obviously the bees must be important enough to him to Swallow his pride and
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