By Tara Rippin • 30 January 2021 • 19:34
CREDIT: Twitter (file)
Police shut down organisation that conned €500,000 out of local businesses in Malaga as well as in Madrid.
A FOURTH suspected member of an alleged illegal organisation was arrested today (Saturday, January 29) by the Guardia Civil in Torrox.
The scammers allegedly promised businessmen in Vitoria and the capital ‘loans’ to finance projects in order to appropriate their money.
The operation, highly complex due to the different identities used by the criminals, which has been coordinated by two investigating courts in Vitoria and Madrid, has culminated in the arrest of a total of four people in Torrox, Madrid, Torrevieja and Croatia.
investigations began last February when a Vitoria businessman reported having been the victim of a scam.
He said he had been conned into handing over a large sum of money as a commission to those responsible for an alleged international company for financing business projects, reports La Vanguardia.
Known as ‘Rip Deal’, the scam involved appropriating large amounts of money or goods in exchange for counterfeit bills by deception.
For this, criminals contact people who need quick financing for their businesses, posing as wealthy businessmen and, to convince, they stage meetings in luxury hotels in different cities and wear top brand clothes.
For these investments or simulated credit operations, they tell their victims that they have to pay, in a first operation, a considerable percentage of the total amount of credit as a commission or to cover processing costs, and they agree to deliver a significant part of the credit as soon as the first payment is formalised.
Since the Guardia Civil received the first complaint in February 2020, it launched Operation Inspired to identify the perpetrators of the scam.
Police finally identified four people and detected two other scams reported in Madrid in 2015 and 2019, bringing the fraud to a total of €530,000.
In coordination with Europol, one of the suspects was arrested in Croatia.
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Tara Rippin is a reporter for Spain’s largest English-speaking newspaper, Euro Weekly News, and is responsible for the Costa Blanca region.
She has been in journalism for more than 20 years, having worked for local newspapers in the Midlands, UK, before relocating to Spain in 1990.
Since arriving, the mother-of-one has made her home on the Costa Blanca, while spending 18 months at the EWN head office in Fuengirola on the Costa del Sol.
She loves being part of a community that has a wonderful expat and Spanish mix, and strives to bring the latest and most relevant news to EWN’s loyal and valued readers.
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