Saturday, January 21, 2012

Large Group of Brazilian Tourists Robbed at Hotel on Margarita Island

A large group of Brazilian tourists, estimated at 35, was systematically robbed by as many as a dozen gunmen in Margarita Island [Venezuela] in the town of Antolin del Campo, who invaded the inn in which they were all staying on Thursday (January 19).

After relieving the Brazilians of their cash, belongings, cameras, jewelry and other valuables, the gunmen escaped in two vehicle that were parked in the inn, which they later abandoned. It is estimated that the total value of all property stolen, including cash, may have reached US$10,000-15,000.

COMMENT: Like the rest of Venezuela, violent economic crime is at a crisis level, compliments of the administration of President Hugo Chavez, which has added little value to the Venezuelan people. Such crimes include armed robbery, express kidnappings, carjacking and ransom kidnapping.

Considering that the same police that are supposed to keep Venezuela safe also have a similar responsibility on Margarita Island, unsuccessfully I might add, my suggestion is that travelers to the island do the following:

(1) Carry/wear nothing that you cannot afford to lose;
(2) Don't carry more than US$100 in cash;
(3) Stay in hotels that are known to be secure and security-conscious;
(4) Ensure you have international medical treatment and evacuation coverage;
(5) Carry your passport or identification in an under-garment pouch;
(6) Don't hail taxis on the street; use a hotel taxi service that you can call on demand; and
(7) Don't walk alone at night.

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