A MAN from the Murcia region may have earned the title of the biggest individual scammer in Spain.
The Policia Nacional only this week revealed his arrest- carried out in Lorca last May- as they’ve tried to piece together his trail of deception.
The 38-year-old has been in prison since then as investigators are still sorting out all of the paperwork.
The fraudster did not own a house or rent a property, but instead stayed in hotels under different names or with short-term girlfriends that he exploited.
He bought and sold cars and claimed to work for large companies, but apparently had no trade to his name.
A Policia Nacional officer who arrested him in May said that ‘his life was completely false’.
The man obtained 576 DNI identification numbers, opened over 300 bank accounts, and requested over a thousand loans, of which more than 300 were granted- totalling nearly €150,000.
Other scams included obtaining phone contracts fraudulently and illegal accessing salary payrolls.
Police said that he started stealing identities through girlfriends which he moved in with for a few months.
That allowed him time to obtain personal details from them and their families and friends.
One of his most recent partners was in Huercal de Almeria who he lived with for six months before returning to the Murcia region to stay with another woman in Aquilas.
Both former girlfriends reported that he got up early every day to go to work for his ‘big company’, but he actually took a laptop to a bar where he used websites and social media apps to trick people into giving their DNI number.
One tactic was to publish bogus job vacancies where applicants were asked to send their DNI to his email address, which many duly did.
Rental cars hired under multiple identities were not returned and registered under different names with the DGT before being sold.
Police got wind of the scammer after a complaint in late 2021 from Leon about somebody taking out several mobile phone contracts and buying units under a series of stolen identities all from Almeria province.
Such was the sheer volume of his different identities and his constant moving around hotels in a variety of vehicles, it was difficult to pin the man down.
He was even stopped by the Guardia Civil in Murcia but produced identity documents that had a photo of a man who looked like him, and so officers let him go.
In the end, he was caught in a trap when police heard that a relative was going for an operation at Lorca’s Rafael Mendez Hospital.
Officers believed with all certainty that he would make a visit and they waited patiently for him to arrive before cuffing him.
The case is being handled by an Almeria court.