THREE elderly siblings have been the victims of a suspected triple murder after an elaborate scam involving tens of thousands of euros, a fake American military boyfriend and unpaid debts.

In a shocking incident that has shaken the small Madrid town of Morata de Tajuña, 20minutos reported that the bodies of Angeles, Amelia and their brother Pepe, all between the ages of 68 and 72, were discovered in their shared home on the morning of January 18, exhibiting burns and signs of violence. 

Neighbours had alerted authorities after the siblings — who were most often seen together — had been missing in town for over a month. 

The love scam 

Though murder-suicide was first suspected, the Guardia Civil and Policia Local are now investigating the deaths as homicides after reports emerged from those close to the siblings that the sisters had been sending large sums of money to a person they’d met online nearly a decade ago. 

It began when Amelia and Angeles met two people online claiming to be American servicemen stationed in Afghanistan, with whom they initiated what the sisters understood to be a romantic relationship. 

The three victims of the suspected murders. Photo: Supplied

According to neighbours, the online affair was known to many in the town. 

After some time, one of the online boyfriends, who identified himself as “Edward,” informed the women that the other had died, and that he needed money in order to process paperwork to collect the dead soldier’s inheritance. 

It was at this point Amelia began sending money, believing that she would be included in the inheritance once it was collected. 

As financial demands from “Edward” escalated over the years, the sisters’ monetary needs grew too. 

Neighbours tried to warn them that they’d been caught in a scam, but Amelia and Angeles were unconvinced. 

A Morata resident told Europa Press that the women sent sums as high as €40,000 to their online lover whenever he asked for it.

 “They sent them all the money they had, they gave them an apartment they had in Ciudad Lineal,” the resident said. 

“They sold everything and the only thing they had left was this house.”

Strained relationships 

Once their own funds began drying up, the sisters asked friends and family for money. 

According to a family friend named Enrique Velilla, the sisters transferred money to “Edward’s” account each month when they collected their pension. 

Vellillla told El Pais that the sisters’ requests for money started to strain their relationships, and that despite the fact their friends and family urged them to break ties with the scammer, the women wouldn’t listen. 

And according to Velilla — from whom the sisters requested €18,000 — the sisters had even gone as far as to sell a property they owned in Madrid’s San Blas district to meet “Edward’s” demands. 

Investigators with the Civil Guard’s Scientific and Homicide Unit suspect that the siblings had been murdered due to an unpaid debt they’d accrued to pay their love scammer. 

The case is under the jurisdiction of the Arganda del Rey Investigative Court. 

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