A Belgian man has been arrested over a €1 million car parking scam at Alicante-Elche airport.
The man, 50, ran an off-site long and medium-stay parking facility inside a near-by warehouse.
Since the start of 2018, he conned airport authorities by transferring vehicles to its public car parks which were left for long periods of time.
In a series of searches, the Policia Nacional found the man had over 20 bogus car number plates.
A comprehensive sweep of airport car parks located over 170 vehicles that he had parked up.
Cars under the man’s charge entered airport parking lots with fake plates.
After parking them up, he transferred the plate to another vehicle which was due to be picked up by its owner.
That car was then taken back to his warehouse ahead of its scheduled return.
The fake plate switch meant airport plate recognition detectors only logged stays at between 10 and 15 minutes, despite the cars remaining parked for months and even up to a year.
After several months of surveillance, the Policia Nacional arrested the Belgian when he was about to make a plate change.
Police estimate his four-year operation scammed the airport of over €1 million.
He has been charged with fraud and falsifying documents with the investigation remaining open.
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