By Chris King •
Updated: 05 Jun 2023 • 18:02
Image of British homeowner in Manilva, Malaga.
Credit: Instagram - Marbella se Queja courtesy of Jesus Navarro
A British homeowner on the Costa del Sol suffered horrific injuries after being assaulted by squatters who had allegedly occupied his property in his absence.
The 52-year-old man, named as Michael, travelled from Liverpool to his home in the Malaga municipality of Manilva after being informed on Sunday, May 28, that people had moved into his home.
Neighbours asked him if he had rented his property out because they had observed strangers entering it. On arrival, he confronted the people in his home and demanded that they leave, which resulted in Michael receiving a beating.
According to his testimony, he was hit several times on the head with bottles and suffered numerous cuts on his back and other parts of his body that were allegedly caused by broken glass.
Guardia Civil officers and patrols from the Local Police were promptly in attendance. After receiving medical assistance, Micheal was allegedly told to ‘ file a complaint’.
The incident at the residential complex occurred last Tuesday, May 30. Asking for anonymity, residents told El Confidencial how the incident unfolded.
Neighbours made a call to Michael in England: “They called him and asked him if he had rented his apartment. He answered no, then they explained to him that there were people living in it, so he said he was taking a plane and came to see what was happening”, a spokeswoman told the Spanish news outlet, as reported this Monday, June 5.
Michael subsequently boarded a flight from England to Malaga on Tuesday morning and headed straight to Manilva. When he arrived, some of his neighbours allegedly advised him to contact the police but he apparently refused. “We told him that we would go with him, but he told us not to worry, that he would go alone”, said the source.
An image of Michael streaming with blood and asking for medical help soon circulated on the Instagram sites ‘Marbella se Queja‘, and ‘Desokupa‘.
“Several people beat him up. They attacked him with a bottle and cut him with glass”, the source continued. “On his back, for example, he had a 10-cm wound. A little more, and they would have killed him”, they stressed.
The injury report issued by the Costa del Sol hospital in Marbella – which the newspaper had access to – detailed that the injured man had two fractures in one finger, plus: “cuts in the left renal fossa, his dorsal zone, and left side”, along with another in the “cartilage of the left auricular pavilion and mastoid”.
In the complaint that Michael filed with the Guardia Civil that Tuesday, he stated that when he arrived at the door of his home he tried to open it with his key.
Upon realising that the lock had been changed, he rang the bell several times without anyone opening the door. “Because it could be a presumed squatting, the claimant observed that one of the windows of his house was open, so he decided to jump inside, thinking that there was no one there”.
He climbed onto a balcony of the adjoining apartment and from there he accessed his own property. Once inside his apartment, he realised that there were people in the room.
According to the document, the homeowner reproached them, asking what they were doing there: “to which the residents of the house responded violently by starting an attack. One of them broke a bottle with which he struck several blows to the complainant’s body and head while he was struggling”.
The wounded man pointed out that the attackers: “were three men, presumably of Moroccan nationality”. When asked by the Guardia Civil, he assured them that he could identify who attacked him with the bottle. He added that he only defended himself by pushing and that at no time did he use an object or weapon.
Residents of the urbanisation pointed out that, a little over a month ago, squatters took over the house located next to that of the Englishman. They said it is a property that belongs to a person with whom it has not been possible to make contact.
“We thought that they jumped from the balcony into Michael’s house, but what shocked us the most was that they had even installed an alarm. We called the security company to explain that that address had been squatted and they told us not to worry because it was not operational. If they have come to install it, why not connect it?”, they quizzed.
After the attack, Michael: “went to the access control booth at the entrance of the complex to ask for help.” They called the health services, as well as the Local Police and the Guardia Civil. An ambulance and police officers went to the property”.
“They went to the house and apparently spoke with the squatters and they told them that they had a rental contract. This obviously was false”, remarked the residents, who did not hide their discomfort because the police did not adopt any measure. “There was a man dripping with blood there and they only identified them!” they exclaimed indignantly.
“They told him to go and file a complaint after he had been seen by doctors,” the residents commented. Michael was subsequently transferred to the Marbella Hospital, where he remained hospitalised until he was discharged on Wednesday afternoon.
He then looked for a hotel in the town and was trying to get legal advice to see how to recover a house to which he was going to travel in the coming weeks to spend the holidays with his family.
As a result of the incident, Micheal is obviously not in a good mood said a source. “He feels a mixture of regret and fear. He regrets that he acted without thinking and thinks that he has put his family in danger”, they explained.
A person who has accompanied him these days said: “He is afraid of running into the squatters on the street and that they will attack them. He confirmed to his loved ones that the house was squatted, but he did not tell them that he they had hit him”.
Michael instead preferred to tell his family in person so as not to worry them and took a plane back to England last Friday 2. According to what he said, he wanted to “get some air” and analyse the situation, because the police warned him that he could be denounced by the squatters for entering his own house.
After filing the complaint, he confessed: “I know what is going to happen, they are not going to do anything”. He added: “I don’t know if I’m going to return to Manilva”.
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Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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A tragic event. Aware some 25 years ago of difficulties in ejecting squatters, I installed an alarm system that automatically dials several phone numbers and replays a prerecorded message advising that the property IS being burgled, whilst away from the property. Great peace of mind.
Disgusting that the law doesnt do something about this. These illegals are in someones priivate property and the police do nothing. it should be the squatters who end up in hospital not the hosue owner.. Best go in with something to potect oneself in future, or take a gang of thugs with you
There is much to unpack here.
Are the squatters even in Spain legally?
Do squatters in Spain have the legal right to attack the lawful owners of a property the same way a civilized country recognizes the right of a homeowner to defend his home with violence?
Spain obviously has a problem with communists and African criminals. But ultimately I don’t understand the point of having a vacation home unless you’re going to be spending more than maybe six weeks out of the year cumulatively in the vacation home. Otherwise you might as well just rent when you’re on vacation.
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