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In March 2013, a profile of a 26-year-old man named Anxo from Arteixo in La Coruña appeared on the dating social network Badoo.

After a few days offline, Anxo told his girlfriend that he had had an epileptic attack at work and fallen to the floor and broken his cellphone – which was why he hadn’t contacted her.

He said the attack had landed him at the Juan Canalejo Hospital in A Coruña.

The next day, pretending to be a work friend, he told her: “I have bad news.

Anxo is in a crisis and has been sent unconscious to hospital which means he can’t access the money he owes you. He has to continue to pay for his special American medicine and a specialist has to come from Valencia to try to surgically intervene and install a brain electrode.” She gave him another €5,000.

Recovering from the epilepsy attack, Anxo told the woman that he was going to return the money because he had inherited a large estate from his parents and received compensation when they both died in the accident.

He then said he was going to be transferred to Valencia for the specialist operation. Once in Valencia, he said he needed a medical helicopter to fly him back to Galicia. The accused faces four years in jail and has been asked to return all the money he stole from his online girlfriend, with interest, as well as €10,000 in compensation for psychological damage.

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