The gasmen – who work for six different companies – often charged up to three times the going rate to carry out unnecessary maintenance work. They are accused of failing to have the right qualifications and of not being registered with the Junta. It follows the recent arrest of four people in Malaga for similar offences. The popular ruse – reported on regularly by the Olive Press in recent years – has led to expats being wrongly charged hundreds of euros for replacement parts or a new certificate. Homeowners are often pressured into having work carried out on the premise that there is a risk of an accident, or are threatened with having their gas cut off. According to regulator Cogasa, gas inspections should only ever be carried out by prior appointment.