The German man was detained by the Guardia Civil. | Michel's

On Tuesday last week, the Guardia Civil arrested a German man in Puerto Andratx for trespass and causing damage. He had changed the locks to a house of which - depending on versions - he was either the owner or the former owner. The 'tenants' of the property, a German couple with young children, found themselves locked out and with their belongings on the street.

When Andratx police and the Guardia Civil turned up, the couple said that they had a contract to purchase the house. The estate agency dealing with the transaction was called and a lawyer arrived and showed documentation to the officers. The police spoke to neighbours, who said that the couple had been at the house for some time and had undertaken some renovation. The German man was subsequently arrested.

The German man, who spent a night in the cells, has now given his version. He says that it has been proven in court that he is the owner of the house. The 'squatters', as he refers to them, had changed the locks while he was away. They had only signed a purchase option; he had not received any money. He maintains that the German couple entered the house with the excuse of stopping urgent water leaks. Taking advantage of the fact that he was abroad, "they asked for the keys, made copies, changed the locks and settled in".