In a bizarre and audacious string of dining escapades, a 50-year-old man, known as Aidas J., has gained notoriety across local restaurants in Spain’s Blanca region.
His method of operation? Enjoying lavish dinners and then theatrically fake a heart attack, conveniently evading the bill.
This act continued for an astonishing two-month stretch, leaving a trail of perplexed and frustrated restaurateurs in his wake.
Aidas’s performance was nothing short of a theatrical spectacle.
As the final course arrived, he would dramatically collapse, clutching his chest in feigned agony.
Convinced of his dire condition, the restaurants routinely called an ambulance to whisk him away to a supposed medical emergency.
In a twist that added to the illusion, he adorned himself in “designer clothes” and posed as a Russian tourist who conveniently couldn’t communicate in Spanish.
However, Aidas’s elaborate charade eventually came crashing down.
After a sumptuous dinner at a hotel, where he attempted his well-rehearsed stunt for the second time, the restaurant’s staff made a different call.
Instead of summoning an ambulance, they alerted the police, leading to his arrest.
Recalling the second attempt, the restaurant’s manager explained, “I think he forgot he had already scammed us before, so he came back and tried it for the second time.
It was very theatrical; he pretended to faint and slumped himself down on the floor.”
Aidas’s audacious antics had spanned over 20 different restaurants, leaving authorities and establishments baffled.
Now, with his image circulated among the local hospitality community, this serial dine-and-dasher’s days of faux heart attacks are seemingly over.
The scammer has now been jailed for 42 days after he refused two fines he received for his theatrics.
As each bill he skipped was considered a small amount – ranging from €15 to €70 (£13-£60), Aidas only committed ‘minor crimes’.
His crime spree went on for two months, during which he was arrested several times but let go because he only owed a small amount to each restaurant.
But the owners of the scammed restaurants want to file a joint complaint to get the conman locked away for longer.
The dine and dash incidents amount to €766 (£666) in combined bills.