EXCLUSIVE: By Imogen Calderwood
VICTIMS are hunting an alleged property fraudster who has vanished from the Costa del Sol owing tens of thousands of euros.
The Guardia Civil confirmed last night it is investigating horse-owning expat Rebecca Wells after receiving four denuncias against her.
Briton Wells, 37, also known as Prior, is accused of duping people into paying deposits to rent properties that she has no claim to.
One victim, British expat Raymond Paul, told the Olive Press: “I Iost a €1,000 deposit on renting a home she didn’t own.
“She had actually only rented it for four days as a holiday rental, but she showed me around it and convinced me to sign an 11-month contract.
“I want her caught and punished,” he declared.
Wells, a mother-of-two from Wolverhampton, appears to have repeated the same trick at different properties around the region over the last eight years.
A Facebook campaign has now been launched by the group, aiming to gather as many victims as possible.
In the case of Paul, 60, from Yorkshire, he put down €500 as a deposit and €500 for the first month’s rent at the property in La Cala de Mijas in August.
But after just three days Wells asked Paul and his wife to clear out ‘so an urgent energy certificate matter could be dealt with’.
“We were left in the dark for two days, and upon returning discovered another couple staying there, with many of our possessions still inside,” he said.
“We still haven’t managed to get some things back, we are absolutely furious and have filed a denuncia.”
When Paul set up an urgent meeting with Wells to discuss what had happened, she failed to show.
However another couple in their early 20s also turned up telling him they had lost a similar amount of money.
“Lots of her victims are in a worse situation than us, and who knows how many more are still to come out of the woodwork,” he added.
Another victim who lost out is Stuart Hall, 44, and his wife Emma, from Coin, who launched a campaign to persuade others to come forward and report Wells to the police.
Hall is furious that Wells agreed to buy the couple’s Coin home, while posing as an ‘independent’ estate agent.
A price was agreed and the couple moved out to a new rental property. In a goodwill gesture, they then gave her a key to the garden so she and her two young children could come in and ‘use the pool’ while she was going through the buying process.
But after more than four cancelled payment dates it became clear that Wells had no intention of paying.
Shockingly, a neighbour later told him she had seen Wells ‘showing prospective clients around the garden’.
One of those she showed around the house was expat Helle Munksgaard – a friend of Wells’ of 14 years – who has also now filed a denuncia against her.
Hall meanwhile is more than €13,000 out of pocket – for rent, deposit, estate agent fees and moving costs.
“All I want is for this woman to be stopped. We have been through months of hell because of her messing us around,” Hall told the Olive Press.
Samanta Fuster, a local Spaniard who posted a warning about the scams on Facebook, said she had received an ‘incredible amount of feedback’ from people who had also been tricked.
Last night, the Olive Press was unable to contact Wells. Both of her mobile phones have been switched off, as well as that of her Spanish boyfriend.
Do you know Wells/Prior? Contact [email protected]
- What a mission! My six weeks at a language school in Sevilla - 23 May, 2015 @ 15:30
- Flamenco and the Alhambra as home-time is looming - 16 Apr, 2015 @ 15:05
- ‘Giving light’ and tile-painting in Triana - 10 Apr, 2015 @ 15:47
- Taking my mind off the end of Semana Santa - 6 Apr, 2015 @ 15:53
- Sinners in spiky hats - 2 Apr, 2015 @ 09:01
- The suspense is growing for Semana Santa - 29 Mar, 2015 @ 10:48
- A Mesquita and a mosquito - 23 Mar, 2015 @ 19:58
- Just the weather for a solar eclipse - 20 Mar, 2015 @ 18:51
- A Roman market and St Patrick’s Day in Sevilla - 18 Mar, 2015 @ 15:30
- The Spanish sorting hat of doom - 14 Mar, 2015 @ 11:05