4 May, 2023 @ 15:00
1 min read

Squatters Rights 101: British family unable to evict gang of usurpers living in their Ibiza holiday home

San Antonio Desde El Sa Talaia Panoramio

A BRITISH family received a nasty introduction to Spanish squatter’s rights when they arrived at their Ibiza holiday home to find the locks changed and another family living there.

Marc Robinson, a prosecutor who served as the head of the UK extradition service in Spain from 2011 to 2019, flew in to the island with his family ahead of the Easter holiday late on April 4th.

But once they arrived at the residence in the pretty town of San Antonio de Portmany, Robinson’s wife and daughters found the lights were on and someone else was home.

A brief dispute ensued with the family of squatters, who told the Robinsons they had nowhere else to live.

The man, who claimed to be there with just his wife and two children, refused to let Robinson and his family enter the property. The police were quickly called.

Guardia Civil officers spoke with the illegal occupiers but were unable to evict them without a court order, as they are not permitted to make a family homeless.

Marc Robinson Mallorca Squatters
Marc Robinson, a lawyer with the Crown Prosecution Service extradition bureau, arrived at his holiday home on April 4 to find the locks changed and someone else at home

However, a neighbour and friend of the Robinson family later told investigators that she had seen at least four other men in the chalet’s garden after the police had left. 

The police report suggests that the property is occupied by a total of six men, one woman and two young children, thus not meeting the definition of a family.

“We know there are more people in the house, and the police should be able to check it easily,” wife Sophie told The Objective. 

“We don’t understand how such a legal loophole can exist regarding squatting in Spain.”

The Robinsons also fear that the squatters are selling their belongings. 

“We’re certain an expensive bicycle we had in the house is not there any more,” Sophie said.

“When we finally gain access we’ll have to see if we end up accusing them of theft or criminal damage.” 

Now, a month on, the Robinsons find themselves astonished with the paucity of legal options open to them to evict the unwelcome squatters.

Written complaints to the court and requests for urgent eviction orders have so far gone unanswered.

The police report has not yet reached the court and no preliminary investigations to expel the squatters have been undertaken by police, according to Sophie.

“We don’t understand how it’s possible that there’s a legal vacuum where it comes to squatters in Spain,” she added.


Walter Finch

Walter - or Walt to most people - is a former and sometimes still photographer and filmmaker who likes to dig under the surface.
A NCTJ-trained journalist, he came to the Costa del Sol - Gibraltar hotspot from the Daily Mail in 2022 to report on organised crime, corruption, financial fraud and a little bit of whatever is going on.
Got a story? [email protected]

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