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Residents use radio to denounce crime wave in Vélez-Málaga villages

Almayate is one of the areas affected by the burglaries
Almayate is one of the areas affected by the burglaries / SUR
  • Several houses in Cajiz, Almayate and Valle-Niza have been burgled but owners fear that a lack of policing means the problem will persist

Residents of Almayate, Valle-Niza and Cajiz villages are calling on Vélez-Málaga town hall as well as the government to take action following a wave of burglaries.

Speaking to local radio station, Ser Axarquía on Monday, local resident Esther Ruiz, who has been the victim of an attempted burglary, said that the culprits have tried to enter houses in broad daylight when the occupants have been inside.

Ruiz also said that on some occasions the burglars have been armed with sticks and bats and that witnesses have seen them helping themselves to food and relaxing while inside the properties.

She went on to say that recent security camera footage of her own house showed three men armed with sticks and bats attempting to break into the house. "We heard the dogs barking but we thought it was because of a cat, yet when we looked at the video we saw they had broken the perimeter fence and were trying to enter the house.

Ruiz explained that as well as reporting the problem to Vélez-Málaga town hall and the government's representative in Malaga, neighbours have also set up a WhatsApp group to warn each other of burglaries or suspicious behaviour.

Insufficient policing

Around 50 houses have been targeted in recent months. "People have been reporting burglaries for several months," she said, adding that they are "very worried" as well as feeling "scared, angry and impotent."

She fears that, despite calling on the authorities to take action, the situation won't change because "there is only one patrol for the whole [Vélez-Málaga] area".

National Police sources in Vélez-Málaga told SUR this week that while they have had a number of reports of burglaries in certain areas and that they are trying to locate the perpetrators, they do not have reports of people "armed with sticks, iron bars or bats".