ATTACKS on British tourists by gangs of highway robbers in Spain are becoming increasingly common, according to the British Embassy.
The number of complaints received rose by 10% in the first quarter of the year, although it is believed there are ‘hundreds more’ which go unreported.
The thieves use distraction techniques to target their victims, including creating loud noises, claiming to have vehicle problems and appealing for help.
Hundreds of tourists in British-registered vehicles or hire cars have fallen for the ruse, resulting in them having possessions, passports and money stolen.
Dave Thomas, consular regional director for Spain, said: “Be on your guard against anyone who attempts to stop you or ask you for help.
“They may well be part of a gang operating a scam in which an unseen accomplice will rob you of your things.”
Among the worst affected areas is the AP-7 between the French border and Alicante, with more than 140 cases of theft reported to the British Consulate last year.