Belfast Telegraph

Nine tourists violent crime victims

Nine tourists were the victim of violent crime while holidaying in Ireland last year.

The Irish Tourist Assistance Service (ITAS) revealed holidaymakers were targeted almost every day in 2010, with 361 incidents of crime and traumatic incidents against 620 tourists.

Almost half involved theft from a person, followed by 38 cases of theft from a car.

There were also nine cases of violent attacks, ranging from aggravated theft to robbery with violence.

Deputy Lord Mayor of Dublin, Councillor Edie Wynne, said being a victim of crime in a foreign country can be a frightening experience.

"You have the additional trauma of being in a strange country and perhaps not being familiar with the language, cultural and legal environment," she said.

"Tourists are extremely vulnerable in these situations. The valuable assistance ITAS provides to victims and their families in stressful situations is to be commended."

ITAS is a free nationwide service with its team of staff and volunteers, who speak a variety of languages, offering support and assistance to tourists who are victimised while visiting Ireland.

The majority of cases are referred by gardai in Dublin, followed by those in Wicklow, Louth, Kerry and Galway.

Most victims were targeted between 2pm and 6pm and were women aged between 17 and 25.

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