Costa del Sol News - 19th June 2008

News from Andalucia & Costa del Sol

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Week 19th June - 25th June 2008


Over 30 people from all around the world attended the Royal Merchant Navy School reunion at the Parador in Nerja last Thursday to share memories of school days in Berkshire during the 1940s, 50s and 60s. There was also a lot of catching up to do, some wonderful anecdotes and even a soon-to-be celebrated Golden Wedding to look forward to.


Mayor and councillors among 25 detained in corruption raids

By David Eade

Estepona's mayor, Antonio Barrientos, and several current and former councillors were amongst at least 25 people arrested in anti-corruption swoops on Tuesday that harked back to the Malaya corruption scandal in Marbella.

It is understood the investigation was centred on an agreement signed in November 2005 between Estepona town hall and a property company run by Óscar Jiménez, who is said to be associated with Marbella's former head of town planning, Juan Antonio Roca. However, it is not known if the Estepona case has any official link to Malaya or other corruption cases in Marbella.The accord, signed by Mayor Barrientos, related to a development in the Bahía de Estepona that has since been embargoed in the Malaya case.Investigators have stressed that the Estepona arrests come as part of a series of cases spearheaded by the anti-corruption prosecutor, centring on alleged offences involving town planning on the coast and elsewhere in Spain. It is understood that this investigation has been active since 2006.The mayor was arrested at his home in the Bahía Azul urbanisation. His home was searched by police and he was taken to the town hall under escort. The municipal building was sealed off while investigators went through offices and files. Similar action was witnessed in Estepona port at Puertosol, which houses the finance and town planning offices. The zone was sealed by police and the councillor for finance, Francisco Zamorano, was among those led away.The case is being spearheaded by officers of the fiscal and economic crime unit of the National Police operating out of the force's Madrid HQ. It is being overseen by the State Prosecutor although he has assigned it to the anti-corruption prosecutor. In Estepona the investigation is being handled by the judge of the Number One court, Isabel Conejo.

Bribery and influence peddling

The case, codenamed Astapa, centres on town planning and involves charges of bribery, trading in influence, obstructing justice, accepting money for issuing illegal licences, the reclassification of non-urban land, and money laundering. In addition to the raids and arrests in Estepona, police carried out investigations at businesses or offices in Madrid, Córdoba, Bilbao and San Sebastian.Also arrested in Estopona were the PSOE councillors for education, María Victoria López, and for beaches, Marisa Rodríguez Pino, along with PES councillor Manuel Reina. In addition, several non-elected town hall officials are involved including the municipal architect, Arturo Cebrián, and the head of the mayor's office, José Flores. Others implicated are lawyers, property developers and businessmen.Among those called to give evidence is José Romero González, the Córdoba-based president of Prasa, the company whose illegally built hotel was recently demolished on the Estepona seafront after years of legal wrangling.

The company, which had been granted town hall licences to build the hotel, was given land as compensation for the demolition order.Political shakeoutThe PSOE has moved swiftly to disassociate itself from the breaking scandal and is already taking steps to expel from the party any socialist councillors involved, as well as Mayor Barrientos. Prior to the last election, the PSOE governed in coalition with PES, which was made up of former GIL councillors. The GIL party had ruled in Estepona prior to that with Jesús Gil Marín, the eldest son of the deceased ex-mayor of Marbella, Jesús Gil, as mayor. Antonio Caba was the first socialist mayor but he stood down in favour of Barrientos when he was accused of money laundering in a drug-related case, although he was later exonerated.

Suspected Russian mafia boss arrested in Frigilian

Twenty detained in the biggest operation against organised crime since 2005

By Dave Jamieson

One of the world's most important Russian mafia leaders has been arrested in Frigiliana. Ten people have been detained along the coast as part of a major national operation against money laundering and other illegal operations.The arrests were made on Friday in Frigiliana, Nerja, Almuñécar, Marbella, Estepona and San Pedro Alcántara, with a further ten detentions elsewhere in the country. Around 400 police officers were involved in thirty simultaneous raids in four provinces at the culmination of an investigation, named Operation Troika, launched by judge Baltasar Garzón two years ago. German, US, Swiss and Russian authorities assisted in the enquiries into the group which is suspected of using front companies to launder money from criminal activity in a number of former soviet countries, according to the Spanish Home Office. They are also thought to have been involved in range of other illegal activities including drug smuggling and tax fraud.The Frigiliana detention of 50-year-old Russian, Alexander Malyshev, thought to be one of the operation's ring-leaders took place at his home close to where the town was enjoying its annual saint's day romería. His 30-year-old wife was also taken in for questioning from their luxurious three storey house, Mirador del Río Seco, which is built on a 5,000 square metre plot with stunning views and is protected by high walls and security cameras. The family includes two children in their twenties and twin 15-year-olds who attend school in Nerja.Most of the detained are believed to belong to two rival gangs, known as Tambovskaya and Malyshevskaya. Two Spanish citizens were arrested as alleged collaborators. All are thought to have formed the hard core of a Russian mafia operation which has been active in Spain for several years, and all are reported to have previous criminal records in Russia, the EU and Switzerland.Four of those now in custody are believed to have run the operation using intermediaries on instructions from the gang's base in St Petersburg and other cities in the former Soviet Union. Activities are said to have included assassinations, smuggling, extortion with threats, and trafficking of drugs and arms. They are also suspected of selling child pornography, as well as trafficking in minors, and prostitution.

Logistic centre

Spain had become the logistic centre of the operation and investigators believe that a number of professional people have been helping with laundering money which they think may have totalled many millions of euros every year. Judge Garzón has ordered the blocking of around 500 bank accounts thought to have been used by group members, including three current accounts which, alone, held 12.5 million euros. Twenty seven high performance cars, plus yachts, houses and works of art, along with cash, firearms and documentation were seized during the raids.Baltasar Garzón visited Málaga at the weekend personally to interview a number of those detained on the coast. He has since remanded 13 people in custody without bail and two more have been detained until they can meet bail. The police operation remains open and further arrests have not been ruled out.Last week's events followed 2005's Operation Avispa which was the largest attack on Russian mafia activity ever seen in Spain. On that occasion, 28 arrests were made and 800 bank accounts investigated.

Police discover Torremolinos 'cocaine lab'

Officials say dealer received the drugs encrusted in garments

By Oliver McIntyre

Police last week uncovered what they described as a cocaine lab located in a Torremolinos flat. A 38-year-old Spaniard was arrested in the operation, which was carried out by the National Police in collaboration with the Torremolinos local police.Officials say the man received shipments of cocaine encrusted in clothing or other items. He would then extract it and manipulate it with chemicals and other substances before packaging it to be sold at drug-dealing hotspots in Torremolinos and neighbouring Benalmádena.Officers raided the man's apartment and found "a veritable laboratory" including numerous pharmacological and chemical substances allegedly used to 'cut', or dilute, the cocaine, in addition to a precision scale and other paraphernalia. Small amounts of drugs as well as two pistols and three silencers were also seized.

Cigarette heist

Meanwhile, also in Torremolinos last week, a band of thieves broke into a business in Playamar by smashing through the front door with a car and made off with 6,000 euros' worth of cigarettes. It is believed one or more of the thieves may have seen the owner of the business, which supplies vending machines to bars, buy the cigarettes earlier the same day at a local 'estanco' tobacconist.Neighbours called the police after hearing the car crash into the door of the business on Calle Playa Park at around 12.30am on Wednesday morning, but by the time officers arrived the five robbers had fled. It is understood that the BMW used to smash through the door had been stolen earlier the same night in a nearby street.

Piped gas to arrive in Estepona after the summer

Gas Natural now serves nearly 70,000 clients in province

By David Eade

Gas Natural says its supply to Estepona will arrive after the summer. The company is undertaking the last installation works of the network required to bring piped gas to the town and is due to finish in July or August.Once the basic infrastructure has been laid, the company will obtain the required municipal permissions to connect the supply to homes. Gas Natural has not stated what the cost of this investment will be.The Málaga delegation of the Ministry of Innovation, Science and Business gave the go-ahead last April for piped gas to be extended to Estepona. The pipeline is 226 metres long and runs parallel to the AP-7 toll motorway from La Lobilla to the MA557 Jubrique-to-Peñas Blancas road.The installation of the network must comply with rigorous safety requirements which have to be tested before it can be brought into service. Gas Natural must supply the regional government with the necessary certification to show that the work and network complies with all the laws and regulations governing gas pipelines.

Manilva and Casares to follow

In the last year the company has invested 13.7 million euros in the province of Málaga and increased the size of its pipeline to over 600 kilometres. It now supplies 68,619 clients and between 2007 and 2013 its goal is to cover 80 per cent of municipalities with between 10,000 and 20,000 inhabitants on the Andalucía coast. As part of this process the gas supply should arrive in Manilva and Casares next year.

Nerja's market moves but the traders may not

Town hall to launch new location on June 24 despite opposition

By Dave Jamieson

Nerja's weekly market is finally on the move. Following more than four years of debate and development, and in the face of strong opposition from stall-holders, next Tuesday, June 24, will see the market at its new site.The announcement came last Thursday from the councillor responsible, José Miguel Jimena, who described the new out-of-town location as "perfect" and said that the traders would be formally notified of the change this week. He said that each stall would have 21 square metres of space, compared with 18 at the old site, with wider aisles for shoppers to walk between the rows. The local police, he added, would be better able to control illegal traders because there are just two entrances to the area. There are 300 parking spaces nearby with toilet and other facilities on the site.The market moved to its current site some years ago when much of the area was undeveloped. Since then, the construction of new apartment blocks has increased the number of local residents, who have complained loudly about the inconvenience of closed streets, noise and lack of parking every week. In addition, the emergency services have said that access would be difficult in the case of an emergency.But the market traders are staunchly opposed to the new location, which is well outside the town centre in the Almijara area. The Málaga Association of Market Traders (AVAM) has been opposed to the move from the start, and following last week's announcement, its president, Juan Rojas, predicted the death of Nerja' market. "The area is not commercially viable," he said. "We cannot move to the outskirts of the town."A recent meeting of the traders in Torre del Mar confirmed their solidarity, expressed unequivocally by Sr Rojas last week: "We are not going to go there." AVAM says its members will go on strike rather than move to the new site.

Licence threat

Councillor Jimena said that any traders who do not take up their allocated spaces next Tuesday are at risk of losing their licence to operate a stall at Nerja's market. The town hall has previously talked of a long waiting list of applicants for such licences and said that any vacancies would be quickly filled. "It doesn't matter that they say there is a waiting list of a thousand people," Sr Rojas said recently. "They are playing with the livelihoods of 200 families."

A very special boy

Local residents hold fun day to help young expat

By John Peatey

Meet Tomas Leighton - a very special three-and-a-half year old boy whose courage and determination is an example to all. Overcoming massive obstacles is an everyday occurrence for this young lad, whose progress against huge odds continues to amaze everyone who meets him.Tomas was born with cerebral palsy, is blind and has been diagnosed with West syndrome, a severe form of epilepsy. His weekly medical appointments list needs to be run with military precision and includes, amongst others, sessions of physiotherapy, hydrotherapy and touch, hearing and speech stimulation. EEG tests are a regular feature of his life, as are appointments with ophthalmologists, neurologists, rehabilitation specialists, audiologists and speech therapists.He has been classified 82 per cent disabled, but despite everything he has made tremendous progress in the last 12 months. Thanks to all of the medical attention he receives, Tomas can now walk with the aid of a walker, can see objects within 12 inches on his right side and is trying desperately to communicate verbally.His medical advisors have identified him as being a child who wants to learn and develop in areas that were previously thought to be hopeless, and his parents Jon and Jill are constantly seeking out additional specialist experience to help Tomas reach his full potential.All of this costs money of course, and now the couple are down to one income as Jon has had to give up work so that he can devote all of his time to Tomas's many needs.To help this brave family's financial situation, a Fun Day and Race Night has been organised for this Saturday by residents and businesses of Urbanisation La Cortijera in La Cala de Mijas, and the La Cala branch of the Lions. The event starts at 3pm and there are a host of attractions for everyone. Activities include an auction by Maurice Boland of REM FM radio for return flights to various airports, a night's accommodation in two hotels, Tottenham signed football shirt, signed Marbella shirt, an indulgence day for two at the Spa Bodyzone, two hire cars for two weeks, dinner for two at the Mijas Playa restaurant, Vera Mar restaurant and Brown's restaurant, and a years subscription to Helicopter Sanitarios. In addition we have a large tombola with a big selection of prizes, a raffle for a gallon bottle of whisky, and many stalls selling items from clothing, homemade cakes and pies, to jewellery, a BBQ and hot dog stall.During the course of the day there will be a kid's bouncy castle, clowns and face painting. For the more senior folk, there will be an Irish dance display, self defence display, songs from a member of the Rat Pack, as well as a session from local band Monkey Tennis. The evening will be rounded off by a horse racing night in The Sussex Bar, organised by the La Cala Lions Club. If you can support this worthwhile cause by going along and joining in the fun - you won't be disappointed - and you will be helping little Tomas to get on in life.

How to get there

From Benalmádena : Go past La Chaparral Golf, and you will then see a sign saying 'Atención curva peligrosa 500m'. Go past this and just before the next sign saying 'Atención curva peligrosa 300m', turn immediately right. On the left you will see the restaurant Tex Mex and next to that, the Streets of London. Go straight across and through an archway with the name La Cortijera above it and then up the steps at the end on the left into the main square. If you pass the turn off, the next exit is La Cala.From Marbella : Pass La Cala (on the left) and come off at El Faro. Go back on yourself towards Marbella, and then follow the above instructions.

Ascari race track to have four star hotel

The complex, geared to the top end of the tourism market, should open in 2010

By David Eade

The controversial golf course, residential complex and luxury hotels planned for the Merinos Norte development may be on hold but its neighbour, the Ascari racetrack, is going ahead with a four-star luxury hotel development at Merinos Sur. This project is bound to be controversial because it is located in the biosphere park of the Sierra de las Nieves.Ascari has announced that it will start work on the project at the end of the summer. The operations director of the race track complex, Melchor Durán, says the scheme will be backed by a 25 million-euro investment.On the drawing board is a hotel complex that will comprise of 24 bungalows, a luxury restaurant, cafeteria, the latest generation of spas with a beauty centre and a swimming pool built on a 6,000 square metre area. It appears that the development has all the required licences including environmental clearance and that in the coming weeks an application will be made to Ronda town hall for a works licence.The tourism complex will take 18 months to build and should open its doors to the public in the summer of 2010. The whole scheme is geared to the top end of the tourism market and visitors will be able to arrive at the racetracks own heliport.

Sixty jobs will be created

Ascari says the luxury development will initially create 25 jobs and this will rise to 60 once it is operational. Currently Ascari operates a race track at the site which it says is fully occupied for 80 per cent of the year. All these activities are usually geared towards the automobile industry and include the testing of cars, corporate events and the presentation of new models and equipment.

Hot weather warningsarrive by text message

Elderly and others with elevated risk to receive alerts

By Dave Jamieson

More than 1,000 people in Málaga are thought to be at high risk when the weather turns hot, and this summer regional health authorities have once again activated a text message system to alert them when unfavourable conditions are imminent.The project, Salud Responde, last year sent a total of 2,442 warning messages to 829 people who subscribed to the service. Its director, José María González, said last Thursday that this summer the programme hopes to reach 1,200 people in the at-risk category. These include the chronically ill and the elderly, especially those living alone. For the first time, the project also recognises cyclists as a vulnerable population.The initiative, which is a joint effort between the Junta, town halls, the 112 emergency service, homes for the elderly and the public health network, went into operation on June 1 and will continue until September 30. Salud Response can be contacted on 902 515 060.With the first hot weather of the summer now pushing the mercury into the high 20s and low 30s, and with predictions of very high temperatures in July and August (CDSN last week), health authorities have also issued general guidelines for handling the heat. The recommendations include avoiding going out or taking physical exercise during the warmest part of the day, between 11am and 5pm. The head should always be protected from direct sunlight while plenty of liquids should be taken, although alcoholic drinks should be avoided in favour of water or fruit juice.

Sunscreen every four hours

The Spanish Academy of Dermatology warned last week that one in every 10 Andalucía residents suffers from some sort of skin complaint and warned outdoor workers to take precautions against the sun. It recommends that a protective cream should be applied 30 minutes before going into sunlight and then be reapplied every four hours. Those who have fair skin, it adds, should take ever greater care.

Benalmádena A&E department set to open

The hospital expects to handle 200 urgent cases a day

By Oliver McIntyre

The A&E department at Benalmádena's CHARE public hospital is set to open in mid-July, announced officials last week. It is to be staffed by 60 people - more than a quarter of the hospital's overall workforce of 200 - and is expected to handle around 200 cases a day.The hospital was inaugurated in October of last year and since then has been gradually bringing its services online; with the launch of the A&E department, it will be fully operational. In the first five months of this year the hospital performed 725 surgical procedures and handled 8,308 outpatient visits, according to officials.The A&E department is equipped with six surgeries - one of them specifically geared toward paediatric cases - 10 examination rooms, and additional spaces for specific medical treatments and clinical support. It also has access to the hospital's three operating theatres and diagnostic equipment, including x-rays.Even as news of the opening of the Benalmádena A&E department was being released last week, officials in neighbouring Torremolinos were clamouring for the Junta de Andalucía to make good on recent promises of a small hospital in that town, at the site of the current Hospital Marítimo.Local officials noted that the Junta's health chief, María Jesús Montero, announced the plans for the hospital, along with a new health centre to be located at the same site, last December prior to the regional and general elections. Now they plan to pass a council motion ''demanding specifically that the Junta include sufficient funding in its 2009 budget'' for the creation of the hospital and health centre.

First British consulate pensions seminar

Further meetings are planned for later this year

By John Peatey

A JOINT effort between the British consulate in Málaga and the town hall in Nerja culminated in a very well attended seminar on pensions at the town's Cultural Centre last Wednesday.On the panel of five were Emma Hall, Nerja's councillor for residents, the British Consul Bruce McIntyre and his Vice Consul Rosslyn Crotty, Donna Wilson from the British Legion and Graciella Pedrosa of the consulate's International Pension Service Team.The proceedings were opened by the consul who thanked the town hall and the Foreigners' Department, and especially councillor Hall, for their help in arranging the seminar, the first of its kind to take place in Andalucía. He then handed over to his deputy, who began by outlining the workload of the Málaga consulate.''A staff of nine are responsible for 350,000 resident Britons throughout Andalucia, and five million tourists, making the consulate probably one of the busiest in the world,'' she said in her opening remarks. Around 600 visitors pass through the doors per month and staff take 4,000 phone calls in the same period of time, with about 100 emergency passports being issued every four weeks. Added to this, there are usually around 50 deaths and 50 detentions to deal with, and the consulate also offers a translation and legalisation service for documents such as birth, marriage and death certificates, amongst a range of other activities.Some points of detail were then clarified by the vice consul. First, she said, it is vital that those holding British driving licences carry both the plastic photo ID card and its paper counterpart (or certified photocopies) at all times when on Spanish roads. This is a legal requirement.Next were points concerning passports. The consulate only issues emergency documents to get people back to Britain in the event of the loss or destruction of their original item, and importantly these temporary passports can only be issued to existing holders in their own right. They cannot issue emergency passports to those who have not previously held a full British passport. The importance of a child getting a full passport at the earliest possible stage in their lives was emphasised. Full passports are only issued by Madrid and there is a standard processing time of 10 working days from the receipt of a correctly completed application.Another important area was then addressed, this time concerning non-Spanish residents, of whom Britons are by far the largest percentage in the region. The message here was, ''Register at your local town hall.'' This is vitally important, the meeting heard, as the number of registered inhabitants determines the number of doctors allowed at the area's health centres and, amongst other things, the number of police and fire personnel that are available within the community.In summing up, the vice consul referred to a wallet-sized Living in Spain Check List For British Citizens published by the British Embassy in Madrid, and to, the website where a variety of information and services are on offer. This includes the latest press releases, especially important at that particular moment due to the national lorry drivers' strike.The next speaker was Donna Wilson from the British Legion whose post within the organisation is Country Welfare Officer. Her office deals with the requirements of many of the expat members who live in Spain.A very positive point was made, concerning this year's Poppy Appeal which has raised over 30 million pounds. ''We have some fantastic volunteers on the collection teams,'' she said,'' but we always need more!''Graciella Pedrosa from the consulate's International Pension Team then made her presentation, as the main feature of the lunchtime seminar. A complicated variety of points were clearly and concisely explained, including the forthcoming changes in UK pensions, effective from April 4, 2010. These include the raising of entitlement ages for men and women from 65 to 68 and 60 to 65 respectively.The team often has to liaise with the Spanish fiscal authorities and are able to take complicated cases right through to their conclusion. Various points were emphasised in this presentation as well, one being that any changes in a UK pensioner's personal circumstances should be notified to the International Pension Centre in Newcastle-upon-Tyne immediately, and at the latest 28 days after the event.Reference was made to a number of frequently asked questions, the number one being, ''What are my pension and benefit entitlements if I live in Spain?'' This and nine other FAQs, along with vital contact details were all dealt with in an information booklet made available to the audience.The seminar then went on to a lively question and answer session. Concerns were expressed about the very high cost of obtaining a full passport in Spain, which at the moment stands at €158. The answer from the vice consul was that the Foreign and Commonwealth Office has to cover the cost of issuing passports worldwide as it is UK government policy not to subsidise the cost of passport services abroad through the UK tax-payer. Future plans are to include fingerprints and other security features to ensure the British passport continues to be one of the most secure travel documents in the world. Another matter dealt with by the panel concerned the period of time during which someone lives out of the UK before losing their vote in Britain's general elections, which has recently been reduced from 20 to 15 years. After this, individuals no longer have any national level voting right at all, as expats cannot vote in Spanish national elections, although those who are registered on their town hall's census can vote in their local elections, as well as those for the European parliament.A vital question was posed by one member of the audience who asked, quite simply, ''Where is the Consulate in Málaga?'' The reply from the consul was that, if you stand with your back to the main entrance to the bus station it is the red-brick building with a flag on it, directly in front of you.The session ended with the vice consul informing participants that the consulate's opening hours have been standardised. They are now Monday to Friday, 8.30 am to 1.30 pm, all year round.Further seminars are planned in various locations, probably after the summer, and details will be published nearer the time. It is the consul's aim that such events will then take place regularly, and if the enthusiastic response and success of this first seminar is anything to go by then these are certain to be very well attended occasions.

Water is the focus of Zaragoza's Expo

Summer-long event expected to attract 6.5 million visitors

By Dave Jamieson

Expo 2008 has opened in Zaragoza, with King Juan Carlos formally inaugurating the event on Friday and the first of an anticipated 6.5 million members of the public visiting the site on Saturday morning.The theme of the exposition is water and sustainable development. Ironically, the 25-hectare site was almost flooded last month in the wettest May seen in the region for years, provoking a frantic rush to complete a mammoth three-year construction programme.The entrance to Expo 2008 is made across one of its most emblematic buildings: a bridge spanning Spain's biggest river, the Ebro, built on two levels in the shape of a gladiolus opening and closing. The design by Baghdad-born architect Zaha Hadid also houses a presentation emphasising that water is a universal human right. Other notable buildings on the site include the 76-metre-high Water Tower, which has a 720-square-metre panoramic bar on its top floor, and the biggest freshwater aquarium in Europe with 300 species from around the world on display.Over 100 countries are participating in the event, as are all 17 of Spain's semi-autonomous regions, plus Ceuta and Melilla, as well as dozens of non-governmental organisations and commercial businesses. The pavilions of the official participants are divided into eight large buildings covering a total of almost 62,000 square metres. In addition, the event has 93 day-long shows planned for the entertainment of visitors, and more than 3,400 acts from 350 companies and artists will have been on stage by the time Expo 2008 closes on September 14.

Expo future

After that, it is planned that the exposition site will become an extension of Zaragoza, with the Aragon pavilion already earmarked as the new offices of a regional ministry and others forming a new business park. Before that, however, an estimated 135 million euros will be paid by visitors in entrance fees, with the event providing a major economic boost to Spain's fifth largest city. Expo 2008 has cost Spain 700 million euros to build, with Zaragoza already benefitting from new road and rail projects.

Rota's beaches shamed with six black flags

Two new beaches join the town's four recurring offenders

By David Eade

While other resorts congratulate themselves on winning coveted EU 'Blue Flags' for the quality of their beaches Rota has to hang its head in shame. Ecologistas en Acción has published its annual 'black flag' list of beaches with Rota picking up six of the ''awards''.A black flag goes to those beaches that do not fulfil environmental requirements. Of the six awarded to Rota, four also had the distinction of being shamed in previous years.La Costilla beach has been added this year because of a rain overflow pipe in Calle Écija through which sewage passes. The ecologists say this could be easily remedied and has called on the town council to take immediate action.El Chorrillo beach has found its way on to the black-spot list as a breakwater has been built to divide Rota from the naval base. This has resulted in the public not being able to access the popular El Almirante beach.On the list again is the Hotel Playa de la Luz because its spa centre occupies part of public land and the ecologists want it demolished. There too is Los Corrales for which the environmentalists say a plan should be created for the better us of this natural zone.The Costa Ballena tourist complex has grown used to its black flag for being ''a good example of urban speculation along the coast''. Finally a black flag went to Aguadulce where properties have illegally been built close to the shore.

For web directions :, put in : Urbanizacion Cortijera, La Cala de Mijas