Paris tourists warned of spike in crime by ‘hotel rats’ gang

Visitors to Paris this summer have been put on alert after a raft of thefts targeting tourists by a gang of petty thieves dubbed “hotel rats”.

The criminals operate by blending in with visitors – both on the streets and in hotel lobbies – before stealthily picking pockets, swiping valuables and stealing luggage.

Tony Mariet, the commissioner of the French capital’s anti-scam police unit, told Le Parisien newspaper: “Some of them mingle with groups of tourists and leave with their luggage and others book rooms in hotels under false names and tour the rooms looking for safes.”

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