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Five arrested for role in operation targeting wealthy property owners

One of the five men being cuffed by police
One of the five men being cuffed by police / SUR
  • Police were first alerted to the group after a couple were gagged and handcuffed in their own home last week

National Police in Marbella have arrested five men aged between 19 and 61. They are being investigated over violent robbery, illegal detention, possession of a prohibited weapon and membership of a criminal group.

According to the inquiry, the detainees supposedly gathered information about people with high purchasing power and their properties and devised plans take their valuables.

Police were alerted to the gang on 17 February when they were called out after a violent robbery at a home in Marbella. Its occupants had been gagged and handcuffed by a group of people before property was taken.

The victims, a married couple, had several properties for sale, as well as a collection of classic vehicles, and contacted a man who dealt in the buying and selling of houses and vehicles. This person gained their trust and acted as an intermediary, going on to rob them in collusion with the rest of the group, sources said.

Modus operandi

To carry out the operation, he arranged an appointment at the couple's home, with a supposed buyer, to see one of the vehicles they had for sale for approximately 70,000 euros. Once the car had been looked at, they met inside the couple's home to finalise the sale.

The alleged buyer then excused himself to go to the bathroom and returned armed with a Taser with which he threatened the victims. This allowed him to make off with several watches and pieces of jewellery.

According to investigations, the middleman (who turned out to be working with the alleged perpetrator of the robbery) tied the couple's hands with cable ties on the attacker's orders, but the assailant eventually gagged the three of them with duct tape and blindfolded them before leaving the house.

As soon as the burglar left the house, one of the victims was able to get free and call an employee of the residential development to tell them to notify the police. As the police were on their way, the same employee managed to get the alleged perpetrator to abandon the backpack he was carrying with the stolen goods. He then fled the scene in a vehicle in which at least two people were waiting.

The inquiries carried out have since enabled the investigators to fully identify the alleged perpetrators. According to the investigations, it appears that they formed part of an organised criminal group.