TWO French tourists have detained a Romanian pickpocket 48 hours after being robbed by the man in Palma de Mallorca.

The holidaymakers had been walking in the same area that they were mugged in when they bumped into the alleged thief.

Not to let their earlier misfortune slide, the couple pounced on the man, pinning him to the floor while the police were called.

However, two plain clothes Policia Nacional officers saw the scuffle from a few metres away and rushed to the pickpockets aid in belief that he was being assaulted.

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SHOW DOWN: The alleged pickpocket being slammed to the floor.
CREDIT: Julio Bastida

According to the Diario de Mallorca, once pulling the Romanian to his feet they immediately recognised him as a known criminal.

With their police report in hand, the tourists explained that the same man had nabbed their bags containing money and documentation while they were swimming on the Playa de Palma.

They had watched the man take off with their items but unfortunately could not catch up with him in time.

The Romanian was swiftly put in cuffs and has been charged with theft.

Investigators say the man had been arrested five times in just three weeks for the same crime.

It comes as a 34 members of Romanian pickpocket gang were arrested in dawn raids across the island yesterday.

The group had preyed on unsuspecting tourists while were distracted shopping in stores.

Their total theft is believed to be worth more than a million euros with thousands of robberies being committed in recent years.

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