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Petty crime in Paris: American and Bahraini diplomats targeted by thieves

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Petty crime in Paris: American and Bahraini diplomats targeted by thieves
13:14 CEST+02:00
Some diplomats in Paris have found out about the French capital's scourge of petty crime the hard way.

Tourists have long been targeted by pickpockets and bag and phone snatchers in Paris and several diplomats, including some from the US, have found out they too do not have immunity from the pest that is petty crime. 

On Sunday the Bahrain ambassador to France Muhammad Abdul Ghaffar had his wallet pinched on the Paris Metro, according to a report in Le Point magazine.

Thieves targeted him at Franklin Roosevelt Metro station on Line 1, which has a reputation for pickpockets and petty thieves, especially on the section that runs through the wealthy western area of the city.

The modus operandi used by the thieves was all too familiar.

One distracted him by making him think he had dropped something on the floor. As he bent over to pick it up, another snatched his wallet from inside his pocket before running off the Metro onto the station platform. 

The ambassador reportedly tried to hold on to one of the thieves but the thief pushed him back and was able to get away.

The diplomat was not injured and he reported the theft to police.

READ ALSO: Sliding doors - Beware the tiny thieves on the Paris Metro

Also on Sunday, according to Le Point, an American diplomat posted at Unesco, and his wife were targeted by a thief as the Lexus car they were travelling in got stuck in traffic.

Reports say the thief smashed the passenger window of the car and snatched the purse from the lap of the wife of the First Secretary of the US permanent delegation to Unesco.

The diplomat tried to chase the thief but soon lost him. The thief dumped the contents of the bag but kept the purse and the keys to the couple's home.

The victims reported the crime to police who organised a surveillance of the couple's home.

A US embassy spokesperson told The Local: "We don’t discuss individual law enforcement issues due to privacy issues, but we can confirm an incident took place."

READ ALSO: How to avoid the Paris Metro thieves

How to avoid the Paris Metro pickpockets

 

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