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Worrying news from Trinidad and Venezuela

By webmaster last modified Aug 19, 2002 12:50 AM

Published: 2002-08-19 00:50:51
Countries: Venezuela

Friends of ours were held up at gunpoint at 10.30pm on the main road. They could not get transport so walked...they will not do that again. They were unharmed but very frightened. She was dragged into a car before being released after the robbery. Fortunately they were not carrying much cash and no credit cards etc. She is still having nightmares. This is unfortunately not an isolated incident. The security net is publishing this sort of incident on a regular basis. You cannot walk the Chaguaramas area in the evening or at night in safety anymore. The Police seem unconcerned and uncooperative which is in itself causing an increase in this type of crime. Further to this there has been a substantial increase in crime in the major boatyards. If a boat is on the hard at any of the boat yards and you walk away from it for even 5 minutes leaving it unlocked you may expect to return and find things missing. If people do not chain the dinghy to the dock when going ashore there is a possibility it will not be there on their return in the evening. The boatyards seem quite unconcerned about the high level of crime. This is probably due to the fact they are mainly full.

News from Venezuela is just as worrying. Make sure that you keep well clear of the Peninsula De Paria when leaving or approaching Trinidad to avoid risk of piracy. Some boats have been attacked and robbed in that area recently.

Margarita and surrounding islands is an area where outboards are being stolen. The recommendation is to haul the dinghy on board at night and even take the outboard off and lock them. The police have been informed but as yet the thefts are still happening.

The above is not meant to prevent cruisers coming here, just to let them know to be very careful. The cruising grounds accessible from Margarita are well worth a visit. The one island we have found with no security problems and beautiful bays is Tobago.

Alastair and Marjorie Bishop S.V. Soprano

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