Spain’s Guardia Civil police have arrested a criminal gang that targeted the homes of refugees who’d fled the war in Ukraine, stealing items worth more than €1 million.
The 10 suspects ‘had specialised in this type of victim, since they usually bring all their savings and valuables’, the Guardia Civil said in a statement.
They are alleged to have broken into seven homes of Ukrainian refugees in the eastern provinces of Alicante and Murcia, the statement added.
Police said they had recovered stolen goods and cash worth €1.25 millio, including a stamp collection valued at around half a million euros, jewellery and computers.
The gang is suspected of using trackers placed on victims’ vehicles to ‘study their routines’ and determine when they were not at home.
Police said they had arrested seven Ukrainians and three Russians as part of the investigation and did not rule out uncovering more victims and making more arrests.
Spain has welcomed 160,000 Ukrainian refugees, who have been granted temporary status protection after fleeing their war-torn country.
Diez detenidos por robar a ciudadanos refugiados ucranianos en Alicante y Murcia.— Guardia Civil 🇪🇸 (@guardiacivil) March 3, 2023
La organización criminal instalaba sistemas de geolocalización en los vehículos de las víctimas para estudiar sus rutinas.