Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Spain: Criminals Banned from Tourist Destinations, But Who Will Enforce an Unenforcible Order?

According to The Daily Mail,  a Spanish judge has banned a pickpocketing gang from going anywhere near Madrid's top tourist sites.

The notorious Bosnian Clan, who have had more than 400 arrests between them, have been barred from setting foot in the capital’s main squares, its famous Prado Boulevard, home to art galleries galore and two major streets packed with tourist hotels.

The gang of four women first made a name for themselves in Barcelona, named by http://www.tripadvisor.com, as the pickpocketing capital of the world before they moved on to Madrid.

The Clan ensured they never had valuables worth more than €400 (US$551) on them, which differentiates the difference between misdemeanor and a felony under Spanish law.

Yet, the Clan seemingly violated its own rule when they stole a wallet containing €700 (US$961).

COMMENT: Although a Madrid judge has imposed a restraining order for all criminals to avoid tourist destinations, such an order strangely illegal considering that few criminals will abide by it.

Worse, such an order simply renders mission impossible for Spanish law enforcement. 

Last year, a judge placed a restraining order banning criminals from using the city's Metro, although the order was eventually overturned.

At a logical level, it is ridiculous that any judge, of any nation, would resort to the issuance of a restraining order against criminals that scoff all laws with a smile.

During the time the women weren't allowed to use the trains, reports of pickpocketing dropped more than 40%. 

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the British government warns British tourists in Spain of the prevalence of street crime, as do other foreign governments.

Sadly, though, most citizens of the world never quite seem to have time to access their respective foreign affairs agencies to obtain FREE information that will assist them from becoming crime victims. 

The only real lesson to be learned for Spanish law enforcement at all levels of government is that even with surveillance cameras, state-of-the-art technology and well-trained cadre, it is insufficient to safeguard foreign visitors and residents alike from becoming tomorrow's victims.