12 Sep, 2021 @ 10:00
1 min read

EXCLUSIVE: British sailor reveals how she was confronted with Spain’s armed police during fraud raids in Mallorca

Police Raid 1

A BRITISH yachtie has told the Olive Press how her front door was kicked down by police with assault rifles and pistols during a series of high level raids this week.

Dandelion Sharp, 21, from Somerset, recounted her horror as her Palma apartment was raided by ‘around 20 police’, who ordered her to get down.

“I was really scared and had no idea what was happening,” she revealed.

“It was about 10am and there was this loud banging on the door and suddenly the door to my room flew open and an armed officer was facing me holding an assault rifle.”

She continued: “He gestured to me to get back in my room,  sit down, and told me to put a mask on. Then I saw there were more officers. 

“There were about 20 of them, some in uniform armed with rifles and others in plain clothes with hand guns.

“They were both Spanish and German police speaking in both languages.

“They took pictures of my passport, along with everyone else’s in the crew house and handed it back to me.  

“It was really worrying as I didn’t know what was going on and whether they intended to harm me. It was like waking up in a movie.”

Sharp, who started the job as a deckhand on one of the big yachts only a few weeks ago, lived in the crew apartment in Santa Catalina where the raid occurred on Wednesday morning.

The landlord of the flat, who was questioned in relation to the fraud, is British.

Police Raid 1

“I’ve never experienced anything like that before. Where I come from in England police don’t carry weapons like that.

“We later found out it was to do with a massive fraud investigation and that the owner of the property was being investigated.” 

It was part of a series of raids centering around an international fraud probe that has scammed hundreds of people out of tens of millions of euros.

So far an ex-policeman and bank manager have been arrested, alongside four others who have been charged, the Olive Press understands.

Up to 100 Guardia Civil conducted nine separate searches in offices and homes around the capital and in nearby Magaluf on Wednesday.

It is understood there were simultaneous raids in other European cities, mostly around Germany, with most victims German.

Among those investigated is a former Policia National cop based in Palma and his wife, whose home was searched. 

The raids were led by the Prosecutor’s Office in Palma in a joint operation with German police.

The precise nature of the scam has not yet been disclosed, but it is understood that the international network deceived customers with products online that did not exist.

It may also involve money laundering. 

Have a news tip? Email [email protected]

READ ALSO: Police raid addresses across Spain’s Mallorca in massive fraud probe affecting hundreds of wealthy islanders

Terenia Taras

Terenia Taras has been a regular Olive Press columnist since April 2020 after moving to Mallorca in the same year. Having spent over 20 years working as a journalist for the UK national press, including as an investigative journalist for the infamous News of the World newspaper. When she's not venting in the Olive Press, Terenia loves to travel, read and interior design. Got a story? Email [email protected]

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