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The Grove Connection, Part II

Forest Grove widow scammed in a related scheme

The web of deceit spun out of the island of Grenada has another strand that stretches to Forest Grove.

While the Bank of Grenada was collapsing, one of the scammers, Robert Skirving, started a new scheme, this time involving a newly formed Bank of Nauru, located on Pacific island.

In a 2002 story about the scam, Willamette Week newspaper reported that Joy Vandervelden of Forest Grove was persuaded to sell $3 million of municipal securities and invest the funds with Skirving.

According to the Portland paper, Vandervelden, the elderly widow of a prominent local builder, received interest payments for only one year before the scheme fell apart.

Skirving once ran Private Legacy Trust in Tigard and allegedly joined the Grenada group to solicit investments for their bank. After it collapsed, Skirving was convicted of defrauding Oregonians, including Vandervelden, out of $6 million in the Naru scheme. He is due to be sentenced in June.