SPAIN’S biggest supermarket chain has refused to up its security despite a string of British expats claiming they were robbed at one of its stores.
It comes after half a dozen British shoppers told the Olive Press how they had fallen prey to brazen thieves in the La Cala de Mijas branch of Mercadona.
The group, who are appealing for action, warned that the same problem is occuring at various other branches of the store along the coast.
One expat, Dee March, 55, from Portsmouth, claimed she had been robbed a shocking TWO times in 10 days at the same branch.
The mother-of-three, who lives near to the store, revealed she had lost hundreds of euros alongside ‘priceless’ mementos of her dead daughter.
“I was so upset yet they didn’t even take me to an office or offer to call the police,” she said.
“The female manager simply couldn’t care less. I was appalled.”
“The thieves took my purse with €180 and all my credit cards the first time and €30 the second time, as well as priceless mementos from my daughter who passed away three years ago.
“One was a card from her funeral which I can never replace, it’s terrible.”
She insists the supermarket should now erect barriers at tills, introduce more cameras and hire more security guards to deal with the problem.
Another victim, 64, who has lived in Spain since 1972, told the Olive Press: “I was targeted in the same shop when two women stole a purse and my mobile phone.
“I realised instantly what had happened and ran to an assistant who called a colleague for help. “He watched two women stroll out of the shop and said it was them, but made no effort to stop them.
“By the time I had gone out they had jumped into a waiting car and been driven off.”
Another Brit, Laureen Pye, who splits her time between Mijas and the UK, said she was targeted in November last year.
“I had a large clear plastic bag containing a bedspread and my purse tucked in right at the bottom of the bag,” said Pye, who works at the Lions Club shop.
“I have no idea how the thief took out the purse without me realising.”
Finally a fourth victim revealed she was robbed at the same supermarket by two eastern European men while a third distracted her by asking her about ‘the sugar levels in the bread’.
“I never take my bag into any store now, everything I need is in my pockets,” she said.
Meanwhile, Teresa Jane Sykes, revealed she had been robbed at a Mercadona store in nearby Coin.
But when she asked for the store for CCTV footage, it was refused, despite insisting she would be able to identify the assailant.
“Even the Guardia Civil in Coin refused to let me see the CCTV. They never got back. Mercadona wouldn’t look at the CCTV without police authority.”
Despite the complaints, a spokesman for Mercadona insisted that current measures were sufficient.
He added that the company would not be introducing more cameras, erecting barriers at tills or hiring security guards.
“When we get a report of a theft we hand over CCTV to police to deal with,” he added.
Dee March meanwhile has decided to vote with her feet and will shop elsewhere from now on.
“I’m now going to Lidl and Carrefour, which was no dearer in any case, and with much better security,” she added.
Have you been a victim at Mercadona? Contact [email protected]