158 ARRESTS IN ORIHUELA SOCIAL SECURITY FRAUD

In the last few days, in a joint operation running in Orihuela and Castellón, officers from the National Police have arrested 197 people, 158 from Orihuela, for defrauding nearly two million euro in Social Security.

The investigation report states that the detainees created shell companies for the sole purpose of offering false work contracts for unemployment benefits and residence permits, and were operating as two different criminal organizations in the north and south of the Valencian Community, through which the workers came to fraudulently collect more than 15,000 euro in Social Security benefits.

The investigation began when officers discovered two criminal organizations who appeared to be obtaining false contracts in order for workers to collect benefits, as well as documentation to regulate the position of foreign citizens.

Besides the fraud arising from subsidies, most of the companies did not satisfy the payment of social insurance fees through the false discharged of employees, exceeding in some cases the amount that transforms the debt into a criminal offense. This operation culminated this week in which, following the Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of Employment signing a collaboration agreement to jointly fight against fraud in employment and social security.

Those arrested charged amounts ranging between 200 and 3,000 euro for each contract in Orihuela, depending on its duration. The false workers had access to unemployment benefits, in some cases up to 12,000 euro. In the case of foreign nationals, those responsible for the organization selected other persons acting as intermediaries. It is estimated that more than 200 people could have illegally obtained residence in Spain in this way and having defrauded more than one million euro to Social Security.

In the case of Castellón, the investigation started after Social Security anomalies were detected in one of the companies investigated. As a result of police efforts, obtaining workers’ statements and analysis of documents obtained from various public records, officers were able to determine that almost all of these companies had been created solely to defraud Social Security.

Among the detainees are a number of people who already had a history of this crime. The operation was carried out by officers from the local police in Castellón, immigration and documentation inspectors and the Provincial Brigade of Alicante responsible for Immigration and Borders.

Filed under: http://www.theleader.info/article/38821/

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