Saturday, January 4, 2014

New Zealand: German Tourist, 19, Left with Little Else After Theft of Belongings

According to, a German tourist, 19, has been left with little more than a few clothes after his belongings were stolen from the backpackers where he was staying.

The young tourist's passport, credit cards, money, driver's licence, contact lenses and dental retainer were all stolen from his room at Tombstone Backpackers in Picton on Thursday night (January 2).

The victim, who was planning to move to Blenheim to work on a vineyard, has been left with a very few belongings after the "clean-out" of his gear.

COMMENT: Not unexpectedly, the larcenous thief has not arrested and the staff at the backpackers have been helping the tourist as much as possible.

Coincidentally, on Christmas Eve, a 23-year-old German tourist was accidentally shot while hunting goats near Gisborne.

An, a young couple in their late teens from Germany were beaten and robbed in their tent in Whakatane on Boxing Day morning.

I continue to appeal to all young adults who travel the world to be extremely cautious in their selection of hostels, particularly in New Zealand, where crimes against foreign travelers is reaching the point of being described as a frequent occurrence.

I am generally disappointed in the 2012 crime and safety report issued by the  Regional Security Officer (RSO) in Wellington and am surprised that considering that we are already in 2014, that no 2013 crime and safety report can be retrieved.

Additionally, given the fact that since 2009, when this daily blog began, we have filed 91 postings relative to larceny, physical assault, road accidents (invariably attributed to foreign drivers), armed robbery, forcible rape, sexual assault, abduction and homicide, which is extraordinary for New Zealand's small size and population.

Professor John Pratt, a criminologist at Victoria University of Wellington, has spoken often about the widening gap of inequalities in New Zealand. "We need more information about how those changes have affected people’s lives. For example, alcohol-related problems are the main drivers of crime, but there is little research about alcohol’s impact on society. If we understood these consequences, we might see less need to spend money on building more prisons,” Pratt emphasizes.

Professor Pratt contends that in New Zealand crime is declining and yet the prison population is increasing to the point of surpassing may European countries which suggests that either crime statistics are incorrect or prison populations are.