By DAISY SAMPSON [email protected]
British resident Geoff Brown, 49, originally from near Oxford in England, is now considering moving from his apartment in Vilamoura after he became the latest victim of a violent robbery in his home.
Geoff Brown, who works as a chef in Ruí’s on the marina in Vilamoura and has lived in the region for more than 11 years, found three men in his apartment in the early hours of the morning on March 18.
“I had finished work at about 11.30pm and had gone home to watch television when at about 2am I heard a noise upstairs so went to see what was going on,” he told the Algarve Resident.
“When I went into my bedroom, I saw three men and before I knew it, one of them had me in a head lock and had dragged me down the stairs. He then shouted at me in English and said ‘don’t look’ before he put a bag over my head and kept guard of me while the others ransacked the apartment.”
The men, who Geoff Brown was unable to identify, stole more than 500 euros in notes, around 600 euros in coins and a further 180 pounds sterling. They also took a laptop, camcorder and some watches from the apartment that Geoff shares with two others in Vilamoura.
“They mainly caused a lot of damage to the apartment, kicking in doors and destroying property and spoke to each other sometimes in Portuguese and in another language I couldn’t recognise,” he said. After the attack, Geoff Brown waited before visiting a local bar and asking a Portuguese member of staff to call the GNR.
“I was afraid that they may come back because I could not find the spare key to the apartment,” he said.
“People have said that I am a hero for coming out of this without any major injuries but I don’t feel like that. It feels more like it didn’t even happen to me as it all happened so quickly.
“I am debating now whether I want to stay in the apartment anymore, especially as it has been wrecked by the robbers but I am not sure what I want to do yet as I think I am still in shock.”
He added: “Over the past two-and-a-half years, I have seen a massive increase in violent crime in Vilamoura and it is not just young people. It used to be that people were mugged at night but now we are being attacked in our homes and if this continues, soon there will be no tourists coming to Vilamoura and no work for those who live here. When that happens then we will all have to leave for good.”
The case is being investigated by Loulé GNR and at the time the Algarve Resident went to press on Wednesday, no arrests had been made.
petrol station incident
Meanwhile, a gang armed with guns robbed the petrol station near the Kadoc disco in Albufeira. According to police, the assailants stole around 15,000 euros in the attack which took place on March 22.