THE GUARDIA CIVIL have arrested a major cyber-scammer in Alicante who avoided been caught by authorities for over a decade.
Operation Zenigata was launched in January to find the conman after a person in the Basque Country complained that he bought a video game console online and never received the product.
Investigations revealed the huge extent of the fraudster’s activities with at least 233 people and companies across Spain tricked by the man.
He also assumed the identities of 61 people and seven companies and the Guardia have so far located over 180 bank accounts he opened to divert money from his scams.
Inquiries are continuing to find more victims and its estimated that he pocketed at least €55,000 from his criminal activities.
The crook set up websites using the names and logos of genuine businesses to advertise products at low prices which unsuspecting buyers ordered and got absolutely nothing for their money.
When customers did not receive the product and managed to contact him, they were informed that to get a refund under an insurance claim, the purchaser had to provide a photograph of their ID.
Those people who agreed to send the documentation were duped again as their personal details were used to open bank accounts and purchase mobile phone contracts.
The scammer also used several phones to receive payments through a well-known instant telephone payment app.
The Guardia Civil said the man had been conning victims for 15 years and the sheer volume of his different identities made him difficult to track down until they finally located him in Alicante.
He even had a storage space a few kilometres away from his home where he carried out his scams.
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