Pathologist Michael Weilert and his wife Genevieve owned a horse ranch in Parlier, California, a quaint town in the central San Joaquin Valley.
In 1991 Genevieve changed her last name from Sanders to de Montremare. She told her friends she was a “genetic expert” on Friesian horses and claimed her French royal family had been breeding horses for 1,000 years.
That was a lie.
Weilert admitted in court after suit was brought against him by a Southern California couple who bought the horse ranch.
That was not the only lie.
Earlier this year, they faked Genevieve’s death from leukemia, wrote her obituary, then put the ranch on the market, all to invoke sympathy to pay an inflated price for the horse ranch. The buyers were told to do their own investigation, but they were so dazzled that they made a full offer without checking the facts. Alive and well, Genevieve’s only claim to fame was her youthful coronation as National Raisin Queen.
Last October the jury awarded the buyers $1.55 million, including $850,000 in punitive damages.