Bali Police have arrested a gang of snatchers, consisting of five Indonesian men, who have allegedly been stealing from foreign tourists on the island.
“They belong to one network, they are also the ones who stole from the Singaporean citizens; a case that went viral a little while ago. Their main targets are foreign tourists,” said Denpasar Police chief, Ruddi Setiawan, as quoted in a report by Kumparan.
Ruddi was referring to Singaporean couple Eugene Aathar and Dolly Ho, who were allegedly robbed, injured and harassed during their vacation in Bali earlier this month.
According to a report from Detik, police said they received similar reports from other tourists, who had their phones snatched away while passing quiet streets. Usually, the victims are less cautious because they are looking at their phones for directions, which is an opportune time for the suspects to approach them using a motorcycle to snatch either their phones or bags away.
According to the police, the gang had committed their crimes in 21 different locations, most of which are in popular tourist areas in Seminyak, Kuta and Canggu. Furthermore, they have reportedly been in the act since January.
“We are still in pursuit of other suspects, who also belong to the same network. They are not working alone, and have a special group of snatchers. We’re conducting further investigation at the moment,” Ruddi said, as quoted by Detik.
Under Indonesia’s criminal code, the men could face a minimum of five years in prison for their alleged theft.