"This is juicy so get ready.
Background information: we live in an old and big manor that has been split into three attached houses. The houses are about 150 years old and were built around five huge giant sequoias which were about 200 years old. In the UK giant sequoias are very rare and the two in our garden up the house price by about $60,000. We lived next to two really nice neighbors one young couple and one old couple.
The story: unfortunately, our old neighbors passed away, so their child and her family moved in (let’s call her Joe). Joe was instantly a pain in the neck we had been sharing chickens with the previous neighbors and Joe agreed to keep sharing them however on her nights she would constantly forget to put them away so we would have to check them every night anyway. One night her little brats thought it would be funny to open our personal duck pen in the night which leads to a mass slaughter later the chickens went the same way.
About two years ago there was a storm and one of her sequoias somehow fell over and died they were distraught (understandably) but from then on, the jealousy started. She would constantly complain about how lucky we were to have two sequoias in our garden and how our sequoia was making too much shade in their garden (it wasn’t) anyway we just thought it was Joe being a pain, there were a few dry threats like they will chop it down or maybe the next storm will blow it down.
Until we came back from a holiday to France to find a huge six-meter stump and nothing else! I mean how the heck do you get rid of a 100ft tree in like two weeks. Two of our old British oak trees had been crushed as well. My mum and sisters where crying my dad were red in the face and we had no evidence Joe had done it. She claimed that there had been a storm and she had to get rid of it. We had a security camera at the front of the house, but you can get in the back if you go through a few fields.
We then were given an $8000 bill for damages to her property and to have the tree chopped up and removed the wood alone would have been worth a small fortune.
We had lost all hope and two weeks had passed when my dad came running in from the garden. We had put up a wildlife camera a few months ago and had caught everything, we got a lawyer on the phone and started our revenge. We got a tree surgeon out who said it was an original specimen brought into the UK in 1860 along with the two that were in Elvaston castle country park there were 218 around the UK but only 60 now, he also told us to call out an engineer because the roots might be in the foundation so when they rot it could damage the house, turns out we would need to redo the foundations. Then we took Joe to court and sued them for damage to property, trespassing, and lots of other smaller claims. The tree would cost 250K to have another sequoia that was 200 years put in and looked after (it's basically impossible) plus the damage to the foundation which was 200K and the two oaks which were another 25k. so with the smaller claims, It went to about $700,000. They had to move out.
And we have now paid off the mortgage done a lovely loft and kitchen conversion and have basically done up the house and garden as well as plant a 60-year-old sequoia tree in the back garden. We also had our kitchen counter and table made from the old sequoia. We now have a new lovely family living next to us who we share chickens, ducks and pygmy goats with (there very nice and I make a fortune babysitting their kids).
She didn't stand a chance in court and as soon as we revealed the footage to her and her lawyer she gave up. the people who cut the tree down gave us the countertops for free as a sorry (they were truly sorry) the neighbors had a second home so they just sold the house and moved back to their smaller one. we feel bad for the old neighbors but we do visit their graves because they were like family."