Spanish police arrest scammers who scammed victims out of 1.5 million euros
The Spanish National Police has dismantled a criminal gang that scammed hundreds of people online out of almost 1.5 million euros.
A total of 45 people were arrested for defrauding 200 people in Spain in 23 regions, including Alicante, Barcelona, Las Palmas, Madrid and Valencia.
The organization’s leaders operated from Benin and used people as “mules”, whom they allegedly threatened with death.
The organization created fraudulent websites where they offered computer, electronic and telephone products at extremely low prices. The Spanish police have detected and closed a total of 20 fake web pages.
Payments were made by bank transfer to the accounts of the so-called “mules” and the gang stored the victims’ bank details and personal information.
The scammers then contacted the victims and told them that to get their money back they had to open several bank accounts, apply for credit cards, and mail them to various post office boxes in the Republic of Benin.
Once the cards reached Africa, large sums of money would be deposited into the victims’ new bank accounts, which would be withdrawn from ATMs in Benin.
The gang also scammed money by posing as French financiers and advertising fake loans online claiming that victims had to deposit money into an account before obtaining a loan.
In addition, the organization demanded that the victims obtain a new credit card and send it to Benin, where it was again withdrawn from ATMs.
Almost 1.5 million euros were scammed by unsuspecting victims during the “elaborate fraud process”.
The criminal organization was found to have strong ties to other European countries such as Germany, Austria, France and Poland, where Europol and Interpol are investigating similar fraudulent web pages.
In the Republic of Benin, more checks are being carried out to identify the leaders of the gangs.