A 30-year-old woman has been arrested on the Spanish island of Tenerife for allegedly faking her own kidnapping four times to extort her mother.
The woman allegedly sent her mother a video earlier this week that showed her blindfolded and smeared with blood. In the clip shared by the Civil Guard, a man is also seen behind her with a knife.
“Mommy. They’ve kidnapped me,” the woman sobs.
“You can’t say anything to the police. If you do, they’ll kill me.”
She goes on to say how her captors beat her and deprived her of food. According to a statement by the Civil Guard, she told her mother the kidnappers would release her for 50,000 Euros ($50,000).
This was not the first time the woman’s mother received such a disturbing demand. Investigators later found out that the mother previously made three payments totaling $45,000, also in response to threats on her daughter’s life.
According to the Times of London, police discovered the ruse after looking into the daughter’s partner, whose family was also involved in the kidnapping plot.
Within 24 hours of the initial investigation, authorities discovered that the daughter was unharmed and free to leave on a whim.
On Sept. 5, police confirmed the arrest of the daughter and four co-conspirators at a slot-machine casino.
Civil Guard officers reportedly found the fake blood and knife used in the video on the group.
All five now face charges of extortion, among other offenses. An update in the Tenerife Weekly said that three of the five had since been released.
If convicted, the group faces at least one to five years in prison.
Shockingly, the Tenerife debacle is not the only abduction hoax in recent memory. Earlier this year, the Post covered the case of Sherri Papini, the California “super mom” who pleaded guilty in April to faking her Nov. 2016 disappearance.
Papini allegedly staged the kidnapping with the help of her ex-boyfriend, whom she subsequently lived with during the three weeks that law enforcement desperately searched for her.
In court, she admitted to defrauding the California Victim Compensation Board of $30,694.50.