AROUND 800 British holidaymakers are suspected of scamming Mallorca and Balearic hotels with fake food-poisoning claims.
A police investigation has identified 77 law firms used by UK tourists to lodge allegedly fraudulent demands after all-inclusive breaks.
“They have orchestrated a possible criminal network based on false claims that have generated significant economic damage to the Balearic and Spanish tourism sector,” a Balearic national police spokesperson said.
The islands saw a 700% rise in sickness claims from January 2016, with the overall cost totalling some £4 million.
Only a tiny number of Brits who filed claims saw a doctor, a police spokesperson continued.
The Balearic hotels hit by the claims had passed all hygiene regulations, with some inspections carried out by the British tour companies passing on the claims to hotels.
Today’s police findings come as part of Operation Hook, an investigation into scam sickness claims carried out in a Palma court.
Last week, Liverpool couple became the first Brits to be jailed for making fraudulent holiday sickness claims.
Deborah Briton, 53, and Paul Roberts, 43, tried to claim £20,000 after holidays in Mallorca in 2015 and 2016.
They were locked up for nine months and 15 months respectively with Mallorca police welcoming the convictions.
“Recent judicial proceedings in the English courts …are leading to massive withdrawals of false claims in the United Kingdom for fear of having to respond,” a spokesperson added.