Employees steal from abandoned customers

March 19, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
Prized possessions are gone after the owners of a San Jose storage facility walked away. The owners apparently left customers and employees high and dry; and some of those frustrated employees may have found a different way to get paid.

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"I saw employees here rampaging the place I was trying to get them out," said Assi Elmalem, from Moishe's Mobile Storage.

Elmalem was called in to pick up the pieces, after franchise owners of All American Moving and Storage suddenly closed up shop.

They didn't give employees or tenants any notice, but owners did leave stacks of renter's files, and all of their personal belongings behind. All American Management in New York, had leased the property and says many movers haven't been paid in months and wanted retribution.

"I know about moving scams or storage scams, but never employees that come and can be able to go into customer's belongings," said Elmalem.

"I got furniture inside and it's all gone," said Saul Ledesma, an employee.

Ledesma is angry. He's an employee, who hasn't gotten a paycheck and he's a tenant with missing sofas.

Meantime, Debbie Gentry-Rao moved what's left of her stuff out. She had 10 of these so called, vaults at All American Storage. Inside one, she had stored a piano, but when she showed up on Wednesday night to move everything out, she realized it was missing.

"I put so much trust in the company. I've had my stuff in storage with them for seven and a half months. It just kind of flabbergasted me," said Gentry-Rao.

Gentry-Rao says the piano is worth $10,000. She may not be alone in filing a police report, a second renters' piano has also disappeared.

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