Robbery stalking travelers

Published: 11/05/2011 05:00



At the meeting
with HCM City’s authorities last week, Deputy Chair of Amcham Christopher
C.Twomey advised the local authorities to take necessary measures to prevent
robbery, or Vietnam
will lose a reputation as a safe destination.

Robbers lurking everywhere

to the HCM City Police, traveler property robbery cases have been taking place
in different situations. On March 3, on the cross road of Pham Ngu Lao – Nguyen
Thi Nghia streets in district 1 in HCM City, Anna Julia Urban, a German
traveler, was walking on streets when two men, riding a motorbike, pressed
against her and snatcher her bag. Luckily, the policemen who were on the
duties, discovered the robbery, captured the robbers and gave the property back
to the woman.

recently, at the road junction of Dong Khoi – Mac Thi Buoi in District 1 of HCM
City, Kanda Michiyo, a Japanese traveler was walking when two young men on a
motorbike tried to snatch her bag. They unsuccessfully snatched the bag, but
the woman fell into the road and was heavily injured.

travelers were robbed, even when they were sitting at shops or restaurants. On
March 4, Toru Yamada, a Japanese traveler, was sitting at an Internet shop at
No 38 Ton That Tung, when his bag with many valuable properties inside was

On February
10, when Shuichi Kitahara, also a Japanese traveler, was eating pho at a restaurant, a man came closer,
snatched and ran. Local residents chased the robber and got back the bag, but
the perpetrator escaped.

One month
ago, Liu Rui Zeng and Yuan Mei Xia, Chinese travelers also had their handbag
snatched when they were walking on Tran
Quy Road in District 11.

The areas,
where most of travelers had their properties robbed, are Ben Thanh market, the
area around the War
Remnants Museum
or in front of the city’s Post Office.

Le Hoai
Nhon, a worker of the traveler protection team, called “the green shirt team”,
related that several days ago, he and his colleagues chased and caught a
robber, who snatched a gold bracelet. The victim, a Thai traveler, said that
when she came to HCM
City for the first time,
she also lost the mobile phone in a robbery case.

Nguyen Minh
Tuan, another member of the “green shirt team”, said that robbery cases have
made Japanese travelers become more vigilant. “They do not want to see anyone come
close to them. I once tried to help them find ways, but they refused my help,”
he said.

“I always
advise travelers not to ware gold bracelets,” he said. “One time, I advised a
woman to do that, but she did not listen to my advice, and she witnessed the
bracelet robbed just some minutes later”.

to “green shirts”, robbers regularly snatch properties of travelers when they
try to cross the roads and they have to pay attention to avoid traffic

Robbery spoiling national image

Pham Xuan
Anh, Director of a travel firm, specializing in serving cruise travelers, said
that more robbery cases have happened recently. Especially, robberies taking
place right at the center of HCM
City, where there are
many people, because robbers think that travelers lack vigilance there.

tour guides always have to advise travelers to be careful when visiting
excursion places. They should walk on the pavement instead of streets, keep
cameras tightly and leave bracelets and valuable properties at hotels.

travelers have complained about the robbery with foreign travel firms, the
partner companies of Vietnamese travel firms. They have also written on tourism
forums about their feelings after the trips. “Vietnam is a wonderful destination.
However, in Vietnam, I was,
for the first time, robbed near Rex
Hotel. Therefore, I do
not dare to bring valuable properties with me,” a foreigner wrote on


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