House Razed in Construction Mix-Up

Returning home after an absence can mean unpleasant surprises -- a leaky roof, a pet's mess, even a break-in.

But a Nizhny Novgorod woman got a nastier surprise when she returned from her dacha: Her home was gone, torn down mistakenly by construction workers clearing a site, NTV television reported Thursday

"There was nothing left, not even a log," Lyudmila Martemyanova said.

A local prosecutor, Nikolai Govorkov, said a construction company tore down the wrong building -- Martemyanova's, instead of one nearby that was marked for demolition.

Many Russians have faced what they say are unfair and inadequately compensated evictions from older housing being torn down amid the country's oil-revenue-fueled construction boom.

Martemyanova's case is extreme, however, and she has taken it to court. She refused the builder's offer of money, saying it was not enough even for a room on the city outskirts, and has sued.