© Esteban Martinena Guerrero | Dreamstime.com
The national police of Spain are in the process of investigating four citizens of the United Kingdom who have reportedly counterfeited padrón documents.
These four British citizens have counterfeited padrón documents in order to be able to gain residency status in Spain following the exit of the UK from the EU, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.
According to the Local, through the Immigration Office of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, the police investigators of Spain have detected the possible fraud existence in some post-Brexit residence applications.
The investigators found out that at least four requests made for residency applications used fake documents. The fake documents claimed that these persons had been already registered at their padrón, also known as local town halls before Brexit came into force.
British citizens who want to apply for a residency permit in Spain under the Withdrawal Agreement must prove that they have been living in Spain before the end of 2020. In order to prove this, they need to present their padrón certificate or private medical insurance.
The same source reveals that the four British citizens that are being investigated are based in the Canary Islands. One of these persons who were on the island during the investigation has already been arrested. As for the other individuals, the Spanish authorities have not disclosed any information yet as the investigation process is still ongoing.
Similar other cases have also been previously reported by the Spanish authorities. It has been revealed that since the Brexit, the majority of residency applications made by UK nationals in Spain have been mainly rejected mainly due to these persons being unable to prove that they have been residing in Spain before the end of 2020.
To avoid such cases from occurring again, the UK authorities have been advising their citizens to follow all the requirements.
Back in November 2021, the UK embassy said on its official Facebook account that the Spanish authorities had asked them (the UK authorities) to warn the nationals of the UK against submitting fake residency applications, either directly or through a third party.
Thus, in order to avoid such things from happening in the future, the authorities advised everyone to use the online database or ask for recommendations from trusted persons.
Apart from the above-mentioned, the UK authorities advised those submitting their application themselves to provide as much documentation as possible to avoid being turned down for lack of evidence.