The year was 1996. After dozens of visits of 2 to 10 days duration, our family decided it was time to buy. USD $15,500 later we were the proud owner of a long vacant home on a big lot in Mirador that needed more than a little work. In its previous life it had been a commercial center for union fishermen, where they would present their "catch" slips to get payment.
The most reputable Mexican/American realtor in Penasco, Patty, brokered the sale on behalf of the union which appointed a 40'ish fisherman to sign off at closing, and take the purchase funds for distribution to the 25 or so members. The paperwork was done by Notary Ortega in the Old Port. As normal in those days on small dollar purchases the means of payment was paper greenbacks. I have no recollection how we gathered up that amount!
The first 6 weeks were great, making the place livable.
Then, we had visitors.
One bright and shiny Sunday morning our front patio and side yards were filled with at least a dozen grisly looking hombres, some carrying signs protesting something. Time for a panic call to Patty!
She roared over, and reported they were demanding we pay the $15,500 again to them, allegedly because their representative had not shared the money.
After a couple weeks of daily protests, investigation established he had fled with all the money and police wanted to talk to him. Patty was finally able to convince them we had paid once, and would not be paying again.
They initiated legal proceeding against the bandito, evidenced by documents posted at the court house showing our names in the recital of grounds for the action.
Never a dull day in Mexico!