A BRIT has been assaulted after trying to stop Benidorm ‘pea men’ from allegedly conning elderly tourists of their money.

Nathan Smith, 23, and a friend intervened on Calle Gerona where a man was luring passersby with the potato and pea game – also known as the shell game, thimberlig or ‘trileros’ in Spanish.

Smith told The Sun ‘six or seven men’ then ‘grabbed metal bats and knives and attacked us’.

‘BATTERED’: Smith was covered in blood after the assault in Benidorm. Credit: Howard George Stirrup

“I got hit quite badly on the back of my head.”

“I was scared for my life, I didn’t know if I was going to come out alive. I got battered and covered in blood.”

“My friend came out of it black and blue, he had a black ear and two black eyes.”

A video shows Smith kicked the floor and pinned as another man whacks him with a bat.

ASSAULT: The Benidorm attack can be seen in the first 30 seconds of the video

Another British sun-seeker intervened and rescued Nathan, who said that he had previously seen an elderly woman ‘scammed’ by the group.

In the video, Nathan tells the camera: “We were stopping someone getting ripped off. I was here two months ago and they defrauded an old woman.”

Another Brit tourist says: “Stay away. Don’t even go near the group because there’s six or seven of them working together.”

According to a video posted on local news site Benidorm Seriously, the ‘pea men’ allegedly have ‘plants’ in the crowd who appear to win big.

DEFENDER OF THE PEAS: Passersby gasped as Nathan was battered on Calle Gerona in Benidorm

Passersby are ‘lured’ in to the easy pickings before losing their €20 or €50 wager.

The police are reportedly able to do little to help. Gambling in the street is illegal in Spain, but as the pea men are playing a game it is the tourist offering money who is breaking the law.

Police will only detain someone accused of conning tourist if they are found with more than €400 on them – something they never ‘carry’, according to the explainer page.

Tourists on trip advisor have also complained about the scam.

“It looks fun and a ‘plant’ wins. Pickpockets are mingling and there are look-out men. You lose every time, and probably your wallet,” wrote Jules.

“Walk on, don’t stop!”

EXPLAINED: A video showing the trick and how it works


  1. I’d be more worried about the Flat-Earther conspiracy guy doing the weird, convoluted voice-over, than the nasty pea-men he is supposed to be protecting us from. Had to stop listening after a couple of minutes, because it all went utterly absurd.

    Location : malaga

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