TWO women, a mother and her daughter, have been arrested in Alicante for a property scam that netted them over €100,000.
They posed as advisers with alleged connections to a series of estate agents that swindled more than 25 people from different European countries.
The defendants allegedly devised a plan to defraud large amounts of money from their victims over a period of several months, after accessing various internet search engines and finding properties up for private sale. After meeting the sellers, they obtained the keys to the homes and then showed prospective buyers around without the sellers knowing that they’d lowered to value by up to 50 per cent to attract the unwitting customers.
The buyers were led into signing a contract which contained fake signatures of the sellers and required them to deposit an agreed amount into an account belonging to the scammers. Payments of between €3,000 and €17,000 were made over time and with the transactions being carried out in a professional manner and the usual delays in buying and selling house, suspicions weren’t aroused.
Once the money was in the account, the mother and daughter disappeared and all contact with them was lost by the ‘buyers’ who were mainly people from outside Spain who returned home without filing any formal complaints to the Spanish authorities.