Suspects threaten to shoot theft victim

PUBLISHED: 10:19 23 April 2008 | UPDATED: 21:45 15 June 2010

SPANISH thieves threatened to shoot a Honiton man - after he challenged them. Ray Griffin, of Dowell Street, fell victim to thieves preying on tourists while staying in a hotel resort in Benalmadena on the Costa del Sol earlier this month.

SPANISH thieves threatened to shoot a Honiton man - after he challenged them.

Ray Griffin, of Dowell Street, fell victim to thieves preying on tourists while staying in a hotel resort in Benalmadena on the Costa del Sol earlier this month.

The incident happened just two weeks after a Welsh tourist was left for dead following a bungled bag snatch.

The female victim was thrown to the ground as a man on a moped tried to snatch her bag, leaving her with a blood clot on the brain.

Mr Griffin was on holiday with his wife, Valerie, when thieves made off with a purse, containing 150 Euros, a silver lucky charm and a Nintendo DS with four games.

"I was sunbathing by the pool and it was quite breezy," Mr Griffin told the Herald.

"When I got up, I saw our bag had blown to one side. I didn't know it had been moved by thieves.

"I realised the items were missing when I looked inside."

Mr Griffin reported the theft to police and was later able to view CCTV footage, which, he says, clearly showed two local men in their 40s and 20s as the culprits.

"I saw the hotel manager and had a go at him about security. There is no security whatsoever," he said.

"It's getting terrible in Spain. Villains are making a living out of ripping off tourists."

A few days after the theft, Mr Griffin was astounded to see the same men back in the hotel's grounds.

"I went over and challenged them, and they threatened to shoot me!" he said. "One of them had a bag and he went to unzip it as he said it.

"Other holidaymakers joined me in challenging them and they left the site."

Mr Griffin believes the men were accessing the hotel grounds via insecure gates. He has taken pictures of the gates - to illustrate how they are being left unlocked or secured with a plastic tie.

Mr Griffin travelled to Spain as an independent tourist and not as part of a package deal with a tour operator.

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