French crackdown on crime at tourist spots a big success

Police authorities in Paris say their crackdown on crime against tourists with a particular aim at pickpockets has proven to be a major success.

The Louvre, Paris where police have cracked down on pickpocket activity this year

The Louvre, Paris where police have cracked down on pickpocket activity this year Image by Dennis Jarvis / CC BY-SA 2.0

Special police units are now patrolling the city’s most famous tourist districts, including the Louvre Museum, the Eiffel Tower and shopping centres in a bid to reduce the number of incidents where visitors getting off buses have become easy targets.

The Eiffel Tower from the Seine. Image by Artur Staszewski / CC BY-SA 2.0.

The Eiffel Tower is an area where tourists are vulnerable to theft Image by Artur Staszewski / CC BY-SA 2.0.
Image by Artur Staszewski / CC BY-SA 2.0

The Skift Global Forum reported that the head of police, Philippe Prunier, claimed that police had made 4,000 arrests and their action had led to a reduction in thefts by 17% compared to 2014 figures.

Paris police have added extra patrols to make the city streets safer for tourists this year

French police have added extra patrols to make the city streets safer for tourists visiting Paris in 2015 Image by Victor / CC BY 2.0

He admitted though that the incidences of carjacking was still a problem outside of the airport, but was delighted by the fall off of thefts on public transit.

Since extremist attacks in Paris at the start of the year, security had been stepped up at tourist spots. This move, in conjunction with the increased police patrols, had led to a “major difference” in crime level in 2015, he added.

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