Dismantled in the Canary Islands a network that has scammed 60 people with false vacation rentals
The eight investigated would have managed to defraud more than 70,000 euros from families who wanted to rent villas in Fuerteventura
They pretended to be an agency and stole the photos of their websites from other tour operators, to offer them as if they were theirs
The Civil Guard has dismantled in the Canary Islands a network of scammers who have dedicated themselves this summer to offering false holiday villas in Fuerteventura.
The number of victims who have reported so far amounts to 60 people, although more affected are not ruled out. The sum of the money scammed already amounts to 70,000 euros.
The perpetrators are a total of eight people who have already been identified – two of them arrested – and are being investigated by the Civil Guard.
The investigation began at the end of July, when the Civil Guard began to receive complaints from people who reserved vacation rental villas, in an agency that is dedicated to the sale of vacation packages through behind a website and profiles on social networks .
The alleged agency, which in many cases did not have the concession of property exploitation rights, rescued photographs of villas, in the main internet tour operators, and offered them as its own.
Once those affected made the reservations and arrived at the property, they found the villas already occupied by guests who had rented them from the tour operators who had been granted the lawful management of the homes.
In other cases, the reservation conditions were modified hours before entering the villas, and the scammers offered them alternatives that ranged from relocation to smaller complexes that did not conform to what was advertised, to leaving those affected directly without accommodation. .
The proceedings have been made available to the Puerto del Rosario Investigating Court, which is hearing the case.
Recommendations for vacation rentals
- Be wary of advertisements in which the rental price is disproportionately low.
- Check the number of people who have previously rented the property, as well as their comments and opinions.
- Avoid making payments through bank transfers or payments by BIZUM, especially if the payment is made in advance. It will also be a guarantee that the owner accepts bank credit cards
- If the mode of contact with the contracting party is by mobile phone, save all the messages received and sent, as well as the phone number.
- Save all kinds of invoices, advertising brochures, contracts and other documentation, in case your contribution is required in a hypothetical claim or complaint.
- Make reservations on platforms of known legitimacy to consult their evaluations
- Request the person making the apartment offer to send you a contract commitment or any document that proves that rental commitment.