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The fraud is related to the sale of advertising in magazines and on websites linked to the Security Forces and the Emergency Services

The National Police have arrested over forty people, the majority of them in Elche, for alleged fraud related to the sale of advertising in magazines and on websites linked to the Security Forces and the Emergency Services.

The operation, directed from Madrid, is still ongoing and as such, few details have been released by the authorities so as not to compromise their current investigations.

What is known is that individuals claiming to be selling advertising space in Police Journals or websites on behalf of the Policia National or the Guardia Civil have been targeting companies in the area, putting them under undue pressure to buy and charging exorbitant rates. They imply that a refusal to purchase may have implications with regard to the future treatment of companies by the security and emergency authorities. As such, many organizations have felt pressurized into purchasing the advertising, which is rarely, if ever, is actually placed in magazines or publications.

This type of advertising scam can generate vast sums of revenue by deceptively approaching businesses through unsolicited sales calls to sponsor advertising space available in these publications on the pretence that their firm is officially raising money for the police, fire or ambulance service (depending on the chosen theme of their in-house publication).

Examples of some publications that have been published include Ambulance wallplanners, Fire Service year calendars, crime prevention magazines and emergency services wallplanners.

These publications and sites are usually fronted and riddled throughout with images of emergency services officers carrying out their duties. This could be an image of a police officer assisting a member of the public on the high street or a fire fighter in action distinguishing a building that is on fire.

Sources close to the investigation have said that the arrests in Elche have been carried out by agents of the National Police who travelled down from Madrid. A number of other arrests have been made in cities throughout Spain.

Anyone who might have already taken out advertising in such circumstances and might have concerns regarding the authenticity of the claims made, should contact their local Guardia Civil Station.

Filed under: http://www.theleader.info/article/44179/

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