Mansion emptied out after squatter claims home
BOCA RATON, Fla. (WSVN) -- Police have cleaned up the mansion a squatter had been living in since December.
A neighborhood is celebrating the emptying out of the foreclosed home. According to neighbors, 23-year-old squatter Andre Barbosa had been living in a $2.1 million Boca Raton mansion since December. "I said to him, 'Are you our new neighbors?' and they said, 'Sort of,'" said Art Grossman.
The foreclosed home is owned by Bank of America. Barbosa was using a Florida law called adverse possession, which allows someone to move in. As long as you maintain the home and pay the taxes for seven years, the home is yours to keep. "I got to tell you, the guy did his homework. I mean, he did something that no one could have ever thought of doing," said Grossman.
Barbosa never made it to the seven-year plan because the State Attorney's Office decided police could go after him for trespassing.
On Thursday, police entered the home, but no one was inside. "We were not surprised. We assumed nothing. Again, these are very unique circumstances," said Boca Raton Police Chief Dan Alexander.
Workers pulled out all of the trash from inside the home and changed all the locks.
"What I recommend [is] to get a hold of a Realtor and go through the process of purchasing the house," said Alexander.
Police do not know where Barbosa is. They are not looking for him and will not go after him.
Bank of America released a statement, which reads in part: "We take trespassing seriously and, in the interest of the community, we will take appropriate legal action to protect this and all properties we service."
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