POLICE have arrested 30 people involved in a gigalo ring that falsely lured young men to work as escorts for wealthy women.
Officers busted call centres, where criminals are believed to have defrauded around 40 people of €700,000.
False online job adverts promising escort work, urged applicants to call premium-rate numbers.
Telemarketers then kept them talking for as long as possible, outlining fake roles, accompanying wealthy older women, with salaries of up to €700 per service.
Call centre workers lied to the young men, telling them there would be no additional charges, and thus constituting fraud.
Those arrested are mostly Spaniards, and have been held on charges of suspected fraud and membership of a criminal group.
Police blocked the bank accounts of the network’s organisers in Malaga, discovering that those in charge netted around €35,000 a month from the scam.
At one of the main centres, police cuffed six women and a man, who are all Spanish and aged between 18 and 50.
The group’s ringleaders were among 14 detained in the first phase of a police operation, and a further 16 were later arrested.