Tuesday, 30 May 2023, 18:42
A notorious thief who has been arrested 50 times in the past for pickpocketing in different areas of Spain has been caught yet again - this time by Local Police in Malaga city.
The 53-year-old man who had faked about a dozen identities, according to police, was allegedly caught red-handed on 19 May when he and a 39-year-old female accomplice were seen by officers stealing from tourists.
Two plain-clothed officers noticed the pair loitering next to an elderly couple who were standing outside the entrance to the Picasso Museum. The man was carrying a black cloth bag over his arm, which he would have used to hide the tourist's phone he was trying to swipe out of his side pocket. The mobile was valued at around 400 euros, police said.
The foreign tourist apparently noticed the attempted theft and the couple fled without taking the phone. The police watched the events unfold and took a statement from the tourist, before continuing the search for the suspects. In Calle Guillén Sotelo street, they saw the pair standing next to a group of Asian tourists who were lining up to get onto coaches.
The pair allegedly tried the same tactic, this time managing to seize a wallet, before fleeing towards Calle Francisco Bejarano Robles. There, they were caught by the police. The suspect apparently threw the wallet to the ground as soon as the police identified him, although he still had several cards in his hands which he had taken out of the wallet.
Allegedly, the thief congratulated the Local Police officers for arresting him, saying that he had not realised that he had been followed, despite knowing them from previous arrests.
Police said the man has a long criminal history in different parts of Spain. He used up to ten different identities and had been arrested 50 times, most of them for theft, but also for fraud, forgery, prohibition of entry to the country, robbery with force, robbery with violence or intimidation, assault, resistance and disobedience to law enforcement officers and membership of criminal organisations.
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