A former businessman is warning fellow Brits to think twice about retiring to dream villas in the sun after his marriage fell apart and he lost almost everything he owned.
Peter Bubb (65), of Holbeach, retired with his then wife, Anne, to Ovacik on the western side of Turkey’s Turquoise Coast in 2003.
But their marriage collapsed in 2009.
Peter, who was in the transport and music businesses, claims armed police arrived at the villa to evict him – saying there had been a court case and he had been found guilty as a result of something he said being termed as “mental abuse”, but he hadn’t known anything about the hearing and therefore could not attend to put his side of things.
A family order prevented him going to the villa.
Peter obtained a divorce at Lincoln County Court, which was finalised on March 23 2012, but it still hasn’t been recognised by the Turkish courts.
He had belongings worth around £30,000 in the villa, which he’s never recovered.
“It was mostly jewellery, my grandmother’s jewellery,” he said. “There were some very valuable items. I had a Rolex watch worth £5,000. Even my clothes, I didn’t get anything back.”
Anne died on August 5 last year. She had been allowed to remain living at the villa which the couple jointly owned.
Peter says the Turkish courts now think they should “auction the house off for probably 40 per cent of the value” and it’s worth £160,000 to £180,000.
He said there have been 75 court cases in Turkey and, throughout, his divorce hasn’t been recognised despite documents being further officially certified by a British judge.
The former businessman, who has since remarried, said: “It’s been worse than a nightmare. We reckon we have spent £30,000 on this nonsense.
“It is absolute nonsense.
“I have spoken to a Turkish lawyer in London. He said Turkey’s got nothing whatsoever to do with this case and asked ‘why is it even in a Turkish court’?”
Peter has highlighted his case with South Holland and The Deepings MP John Hayes and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
He said: “I am retired and live with my wife on a pension only and want this story publishing as a warning to others that are contemplating moving overseas and retiring that you can lose everything you have had as I have.”
He’s now writing his story for a book.