In an investigation into property for sale in Torrevieja and other areas, the Civil Guard has arrested three people in Torrevieja, two Spanish men aged 47 and 50, and a 34-year-old Polish woman, as alleged perpetrators of a continuing crime of real estate fraud, a crime of forgery of an official document, three additional crimes of document forgery, four crimes of fraud in the processing of foreigner certificates, and a crime of belonging to a criminal group.

The three work for a firm of Torrevieja solicitors which has been investigated by the Civil Guard as the criminal base for a group of people dedicated to real estate scams in the real estate world and in the processing of documentation for foreigners.

According to the investigations these three people had already committed previous crimes and had their functions well established.

Two of them took care of entrapping the victims and gaining their trust. To give more credibility to the transactions, they went to the lawyer’s office, who drafted the contracts and performed the necessary legal procedures.

With the assumed security provided by these professionals, customers, who were mostly foreigners, seemed happy to pay significant amounts of money for the processing of their applications for the certificates of foreign identity numbers (NIE), 3,500 euros to prove economic solvency in Spain, or 30,000 euros if it was in order to reserve a property.

Once the money was received, they ignored the clients, who due to their position as foreigners, were reluctant to file a complaint and follow a police process in Spain.

In the solicitors office the agents seized documentation, computer equipment and 8,800 euros in cash, of which the origin cannot be justified.

Thanks to the rapid intervention of the Civil Guard only a dozen or so people were defrauded from which the benefits to the criminal group was in the region of 50,000 euros.

The perpetrators have now been arrested for the crimes of real estate fraud, falsification of official document, falsification of commercial documentation, fraud by the processing of foreigner certificates, and a crime of belonging to a criminal group.

Torrevieja’s Court No. 2 ordered the detention of the three perpetrators although one was able to reach an agreement for bail.