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Refunds you are due from sellers – whether they are companies, partnerships, or individual sole traders – are always worth fighting for.
Having successfully helped various clients get the refunds they deserve, – by going to court, when necessary – our Small Claims Court-based service The Complaint Handlers (TCH) has changed its name. It is now Refund Rescue.
The Complaint Handlers (TCH) will continue but only as a service for organisations and individuals who are being claimed against. If TCH decides you have a good case, we will continue to help negotiate resolutions which are acceptable to all sides – or prepare a robust defence for court – if necessary.
We are based in Scotland and we welcome clients from throughout the UK.
Contact Refund Rescue at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a message on 01463 600151.
We find missing Indian man in Scotland after four years
Instructed by a family member in early April 2021, we began searching for a former Indian student who had come to Scotland more than a decade ago. They had not heard from him for four years. It was proving difficult and we decided this was not a job for checking electoral rolls or consumer databases.
The client had a single name, however, of a woman who had helped his brother years ago. Thankfully, the woman’s combination of first name and surname was fairly uncommon and there were only a few of them in central Scotland. Happily, the first one we found on social media matched a photo of her supplied by the client.
The old friend decides to help us
We quickly found out her address and wrote to her. We didn’t want to risk her being so cautious that she would decline a friend request on social media. When she got our letter, however, she was very helpful and phoned us straight back.
She quickly agreed the family should know their son was alive and told us how she knew the missing man from his former workplace. She had an address where she and her late husband had once visited him. That was a proper lead. Our man Dave went and knocked on the door. The new tenant there told him who had been there and he still had a name of one of the former occupants.
He had enough information about this former occupant for us to find out what he did. Luckily, his mobile number was actually published on the organisation’s website. We called him and he promised to pass on a message to his Indian friend.
We get the call
After getting a message to call us, the missing man phoned us that evening. He confirmed he was alive and well. There were issues, but he promised to contact his family in southern India soon. Our job was done.
Although our detailed report to them could not include an actual physical address for the man we found, his family in India were satisfied we had found him and they then settled their account with us.
This looked like it was going to be a very difficult and possibly protracted inquiry. However, we got the breaks and we wish to warmly thank everyone who trusted us and helped us get the right result.
If you need help from Impartial Investigations, get in touch at impartialinvestigations.co.uk/contact-us/
Before you hire a private investigator, always make sure they are full member of a trusted body, which vets their members, like the Association of British Investigators.
Scots reunited after 52 years
Davina and Nicky, eat your heart out
16 March 2021
Reunite brothers who have not seen each other in half a century? Is that even possible? Darned right it is and we did it. We are still absolutely delirious here because we recently found a Scottish man in London whose brother, who was on the other side of the world, had not seen him for 52 years. That’s a long time.
To get back into serious tracing of missing family members with the excellent databases that are now available to investigators who can prove they are not dodgy, we had a free offer to new clients. Until the end of January 2021, my business partner David and I would work on missing people cases for 13 weeks for free – absolutely no charge.
People found it hard to believe. They thought it was a scam. Because we weren’t taking money, we offered our services to relatives looking to reunite with people on social media. We asked a Scottish man in Australia looking for his long-lost brother if we could help. He said: “Yes please,” and signed up.
After David and I got our instructions and Authority To Investigate in December 2020, we were upbeat. We told the searching brother, who lives in Western Australia, in an online chat to leave it all to us. We would reunite them. Then … the reality. We had a subject who had a fairly common first name and surname so it was not easy. At that early stage, after searching the databases we subscribe to, we had 121 possibles. That was going to be impossibly-expensive and time-consuming. We were banging our heads.
So we started searching for phone numbers for the names and addresses but each one in turn came up negative. There was no certainty of success even if we found all the phone numbers for the 121 – and, of course, we didn’t. We got downhearted and gave up after calling about 20.
Focusing on Scotland, we spoke to various men with that name in Paisley, Dundee and the Borders particularly. We didn’t have their birth dates before we called so we weren’t sure if they were a fit or not. They wanted to help reunite them when they heard the story, but they couldn’t.
We were absolutely sure we found him at a Lancashire address. There was a digit wrong in the birth date but mistakes do creep in. It wasn’t him.
At that point, we happened to subscribe to a new more-powerful database. Our membership of the Association of British Investigators brought that about. That system helped us get the possibles down to six and one who had no activity through credit transactions or changes of address for many years.
No phone number. It’s too long a shot.
We tried the search on our trusty old database – just in case. It pinged a consumer transaction event from a couple of months before. The birth date seemed correct, he was not shown as deceased, he was credit checked when he bought something recently – so he is still there. What are we waiting for?
We sent a Signed For letter asking him to call our 0800 number. No response. Then we found out that Covid, and the inability of Royal Mail to redirect resources, had crippled the sorting offices in various areas including his local area in London. After three weeks, our letter had still not been delivered. That’s a scandal that is not being reported properly, for some reason.
We ended up emailing the letter to a brilliant courier company in south London, who printed out our letter, put it in an envelope and sent a biker round with it. Then … no response.
A few days later, the phone rang and I heard a man say: “I think you may be looking for me?” It was him. By jove, it was this very polite man whose brother has been looking for him since he didn’t return from university 52 years ago.
“I was trying to look for him and I had no idea he had gone back to Australia. Well, well, well.”
I then asked if I could share the recording of the call with his brother in Australia. “Aye, you may,” he said softly. I admit it, at that point I had tears in my eyes.
When I messaged the Australian brother, I attached the recording of his sibling. That was in was the middle of the night over there so after a few hours, I messaged him again for a bit of reaction. He was too emotional to see the keyboard.
It’s OK. I will wait, I said, reaching for another Kleenex.
He has since told us that, although they are both sensible and taking things slowly, the brothers are now in touch and making plans. That is fantastic.
After Covid, who knows what could happen? We may even get the brothers to do an interview about their new lives with each other again.
Reunite them we did, and reuniting people who have been separated by life events, youthful enthusiasms, mistakes and misunderstandings is absolutely great. It’s the best job in the world.
Get in touch.
ABI is our badge of trust
UPDATE – John has since been certified as a Full Member of the ABI.
Impartial Investigations is a member of the Association of British Investigators (the ABI). One of our partners, David, is a Full Member. The other, John, is a Provisional Member who is working towards Full Membership.
Aren’t all private investigators licenced in the UK?
No. There is no licencing system in the UK. That is why the industry is full of absolute rogues. That’s the truth. Many so-called “private investigators” have criminal records. Anyone can call themselves a PI and make money from gullible clients who lose money because they don’t bother to check their credentials.
Never hire a PI without checking they are part of a reputable industry association which checks their criminal record – like the Association of British Investigators (the ABI). The ABI is also pressing for government licencing to weed out the incompetents and the crooks. That’s to get rid of the many dodgy operators who see themselves as a latter-day Sherlock Holmes but who have no clue how they will ensure data and client protection.
What does ABI membership mean?
It means that the ABI has checked our personal references and credit worthiness at Impartial Investigations. It has also checked that we don’t have criminal records. Our public liability insurance has been checked by the ABI to protect our clients in case a mistake or an accident happens. It also means that we know about data protection and, specifically, the rules over GDPR. That is important as dealing with data is actually what private investigation is all about.
ABI membership also means that we must follow the ABI’s Code of Ethics and Professional Standards. The Law Society of Scotland has the ABI as an approved supplier and it is also endorsed by the Law Society of England and Wales. No other body in this industry has that level of trust.
Are all private investigators members of the ABI or some such body?
Sadly, no. There are other associations for private investigators. Some, however, are better than others at checking their members actually know what they are doing and keep within the law. To some of us, some associations appear not to do enough – or care enough – to ensure protections for their members’ clients are in place.
I need an investigator but I don’t know who to choose.
If you choose a rogue investigator who pretends to know what they are doing – or who is a convicted criminal fraudster, it could cost you dearly. There are literally hundreds of them scattered around the UK. By all means call Impartial Investigations and we will answer your questions to see if we fit your requirements.
Or call the ABI on 020 8191 7500 or email them at Secretariat@theABI.org.uk and they will keep you right with the best advice.
Johnny Connelly at Speir’s Wharf
John Connelly, 28, also known as Johnny, was discovered in the water at Speirs Wharf in Port Dundas, Glasgow, on Monday, July 22, 2019. That was a week after he was reported missing.
He had failed to return home after spending a day out with his pal in the city centre on Monday, July 15.
Police who have been investigating what happened that evening think he was involved an altercation at the Garscube Road underpass in Cowcaddens around 10.20pm. He had multiple injuries to his head and body.
John, from Cathay Street in Milton and who was known to many as Johnny, was last seen wearing a black Adidas hooded top, with white stripes down the sleeves. He also had on black jogging trousers and royal blue coloured Nike trainers.
Johnny Connelly’s family are devastated
“John’s family are still understandably devastated by his death,” said Detective Inspector John Morrison of Maryhill CID. “It is made all the harder by not knowing what happened to him. We know he was in the city with his pal. But they had separated when heading home for the night.
“Around 10 pm John is seen walking alone in Buchanan Street past Buchanan Galleries. He then went past the bus station and on to Dundasvale Court. Then he went into the underpass at Garscube Road leading to Speirs Wharf in the Cowcaddens area around 10.20.”
Garscube Road at Speirs Wharf is a popular route. It is used by runners, dog walkers and skateboarders.
Anyone with information is asked to call CID officers at Maryhill Police Station via 101. Please quote incident number 3452 of 22 July 2019.
NOTE: If you have information but would rather stay anonymous and not speak to a human, call Impartial Investigations voicemail on 0800 832 1678 day or night.
Missing Persons in Scotland will feature here regularly
Missing persons are a part of life in Scotland, sadly. Impartial Investigations is dedicated to doing what it can to help Scottish families suffering the trauma of having a missing person in suspicious or even unexplained circumstances. We will investigate, where necessary, and we will make public appeals for help.
If you know what happened to a missing person, we would like to hear from you. Their families need to know what happened to their loved ones. Whether you were involved in the person’s disappearance or not, there comes a time when you realise that pretending there is nothing you can do is just not good enough. You need to be able to sleep at night too.
Why should you call us? Impartial just wants the information. Remember, we are not the police. We do not want to detain anyone and take them in for questioning. You may call us day or night and we will not ask you questions.
You have information about a Scottish missing person? Please call now:
Freephone: 0800 832 1678
24-hour voicemail only. No human answer.
No one will ever answer. It’s voicemail only. You may leave your contact details or you may give us the information anonymously. It’s your choice. But please, do it …
Or email: email@example.com
You should also call CrimeStoppers UK anonymously if crime is involved.
If you are a missing person, you should ring either the police on 101, or 999 if it is an emergency. Otherwise, call the charity Missing People on 116 000 for the best advice.
Prefer to discuss the matter with one of our investigators? See here.
Last updated: 3 September 2020