By Anna Ellis • 15 June 2022 • 14:58
Balcon del Mediterráneo, Benidorm, Spain. CC/Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0
The victims, generally elderly people, have allegedly been defrauded for more than €7,000.
Police in Benidorm has arrested a 39-year-old man and his accomplice a 44-year-old man. The two arrested are of Spanish and Colombian nationality, one with previous convictions in various parts of the country were released with charges after being brought before the court in Benidorm
The thieves’ plan consisted of jamming paper or other material into the slot where the bank card was inserted into the ATM. When the victims, generally elderly people with less knowledge of ATM operations, were unable to insert the card, they approached them and offered to help them, according to the National Police.
After gaining the trust of the elderly, the fraudsters told them that they could carry out the banking operation using the ‘contactless’ mode of the card in the ATM device. Once they had convinced them, they took the opportunity to look at the code they entered to complete the transaction.
When the victims had finished their transactions, the thieves would tell them that they had to swipe the card again to complete the transaction. The victims accessed and left the ATM without knowing that the transaction had been left open and that the suspects were operating freely at the ATM making cash withdrawals.
On several occasions, when they saw the possibility of doing so, the two men changed the debit cards of the victims, giving them another one with similar characteristics in order to be able to make purchases in shops and jewellers in the city.
The investigation has managed to recover part of the money swindled from the elderly, as well as several pieces of jewellery bought illegally in jewellery shops in Benidorm.
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Originally from the UK, Anna is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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