Pickpockets Stalk Tourists and More at Events in Cuzco

Crowds Make Thievery Possible (Wayra)

I ran into a friend yesterday and we talked about how crime has increased in our city , compared with earlier years.  We did not used to hear so much about robberies and murders in the news.  Everything was more tranquil and people lived a life with fewer risks

Now we hear about crimes every day, it seems, that fill us with anxiety. They also make us worried about going out at night because of a lack of security.  Even in the day time there are concerns. There are delinquents in the street who look to get easy money, whether through trickery with cell phones or electronic apparatuses which appear to be messed up. It seems there are always new tricks and forms of fraud.

Other delinquents specialize in hitting tourists, since there are so many who come to Cuzco from all parts of the world. These people dedicated to evil only work specific areas where you can count on there being foreigners. The Plaza de Armas, our main square, and San Blas are the areas where they find the greatest success.

Furthermore, whenever there is a large event, large gathering of people, including tourists, they go to work. For example, when we have the show of lights and sounds in the main square, around the Day of Cuzco, the plaza fills wall to wall with people, both those from our city and tourists.  That is when these bad young men have the most success. They will pick the pockets of anyone who is unwary. This day there are many thefts of cameras, iPhones, cell phones, wallets, and more. This happens even though the city redoubles the number of police and security for the event. The thieves are not afraid and just go about their business calmly

My friend and I wondered how we could diminish the number of thefts, since we live in one of the most visited cities in the world. It does not seem fair that these people who come here with lots of desire to have fun and get to know our city should have bad experiences and take home bad memories.

We decided that until we can get rid of corrupt policemen, this kind of thievery and other crime will not diminish. These people are responsible for the pick pockets and other thieves continuing their ongoing crime. We believe this since whenever the thieves are arrested they only are kept for just a few hours before being released.  We think that happens because they give the police a gift, a bribe–whatever they stole that day as well as some extra money. Once freed they just continue with their work.

Until we have a more honest set of enforcers of the law as well as a better judicial system, one that does not accept bribes but punishes them, it seems unlikely we will be free of this delinquency. Our leaders need to deal with this so that all the people who come to our city will be able to take away wonderful memories of good times in the Imperial City of Cuzco

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