International network preys on hotel guests

Two foreign individuals suspected of being part of an international network of criminals targeting guests in luxury hotels in the Algarve during the past four weeks were caught by the GNR police in Quarteira last week soon after they had carried out a theft.

The two men have been placed in custody by a Loulé court. It is believed that the accused, said to be part of an international network, are of Algerian nationality and were amassing stolen money and goods from affluent tourists to support extremist groups.

This information has come to light after investigations by Interpol into the robberies that occurred over the past weeks in the Algarve, when more than a dozen victims were robbed.

The two men used tools and substitute keys to break into unoccupied hotel rooms where they stole thousands of euros in cash, jewellery and valuable items.

They managed to avoid arousing suspicion after entering the selected hotel by posing as affluent tourists.

According to a GNR and an Interpol source, the network operates in various European cities and is said to be highly professional.

According to a police source, the two men, both aged 30, pretended to be hotel guests to keep a close eye on the movement of guests staying in up-market hotels in the Loulé, Vilamoura and Albufeira areas.

After selecting their victim, they tricked their way past hotel security and waited until the hotel room was unoccupied before forcing entry.

Police found stolen computers, cameras, iPads, iPhones and various other valuables in their possession and a spokesperson said the modus operandi of the pair clearly showed they were professionals.

Last week the Algarve Resident reported on a similar case affecting a family from Northern Ireland staying at an aparthotel hotel in Praia da Rocha.

Read the report ‘Holiday turns to nightmare’ at