The Alicante Civil Guard of Alicante has dismantled a criminal group that tried to defraud 250,000 euros from the Insurance Compensation Consortium that is dealing with the damage caused by DANA last year.

The men claimed that they had lost 200,000 kilos of merchandise, including lemons and potatoes, 3,000 wooden boxes and a thousand pallets, which were all stored inside a company warehouse.

The claim was processed and paid but during a review file carried out in the face of some inconsistencies detected in the documentation the authorities suspected that it could be a scam. In July of this year, they asked the Economic Crimes Section of the Alicante Civil Guard to carry out an investigation.

The study carried out by the agents concluded that there was no fruit and vegetable production, the boxes, nor the pallets that were supposedly damaged. The alleged victims had falsified estimates, invoices and delivery notes, to fake the merchandise, which never really existed.

The Civil Guard has subsequently detained four people and is still investigating another, in the town of Rafal. The detainees are three men between 22 and 60 years of age, and a 58-year-old woman. The fifth person who has been investigated is a 44-year-old woman. All of them are of Spanish nationality. There are understood to be family ties between the group who have been charged with  fraud, document falsification, and a crime of belonging to a criminal organisation.

Some of the authors have records for similar events, currently having pending cases for such events.