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The Foreign Office has warned British tourists that being seen with a British-registered vehicle makes them ‘an easy target’ for highway gangs. Thieves have been typically tricking their victims with loud noises, fake accidents and false vehicle problems.
It has been reported that hundreds of visitors in British cars have had their essential holiday possessions stolen from them, including passports and money. Victims are duped into helping the criminals with vehicle problems or apparent accidents when the quick and slick distraction mugging takes place.
The number of roadside muggings has significantly increased on Spanish roads since the economic situation in Europe worsened. The British Embassy in Madrid has reported a 10% rise in the first three months of this year alone.
“Motorists may be driving along the motorway and not notice there’s a car close up behind,” a spokesman for the embassy told The Daily Mail. “Someone in the other car throws a stone at their vehicle which creates a loud bang. The British drivers pull over to see what has happened and the gang is behind them. They cause a distraction to steal from them or simply mug them. It’s a growing problem.”
The AP7 motorway between the French boarder and the Alicante region of southern Spain is a hotspot for highway robberies. More than 140 cases of theft were reported last year. As millions of families are about to embark on their summer breaks, the Foreign Office has warned them to avoid taking British-registered cars. Those looking to hire a car for their summer holiday might wish to take out car hire insurance and car hire excess insurance to avoid large excesses.
Date Created: 06/08/2012