PANAJI: Following increasing incidents of cases of illegal confinement, fraud, false criminal cases, and robbery involving Japanese tourists near Anjuna Beach in Goa, the Consulate General of Japan in Mumbai has issued a warning for the Japanese tourists visiting or planning to visit this popular beach.
In an advisory issued recently, the Consulate General has asked Japanese tourists to remain aware and vigilant of any activities of criminal groups targeting travellers and implicating them into false cases of banned drug possession and then extorting money from them.
Last year in April, a 59-year-old Japanese tourist was implicated in illegally possessing banned drugs (charas and ganja) and was arrested by Anjuna Police. The police had recovered the drugs from a scooter parked outside his rented accommodation.
“An incident similar to this case occurred even before the corona disaster several years ago. As the number of people travelling overseas has increased due to the recent relaxation of immigration restrictions in response to the novel coronavirus infection, please be aware that there is a possibility that the activities of criminal groups targeting travellers, etc., have intensified.”
The Consulate General stated that recently, there have been multiple cases of confinement, fraud and robbery involving Japanese tourists near Anjuna Beach in Goa. “Due to the relaxation of immigration restrictions due to the novel coronavirus infection, the number of people travelling overseas is increasing, and as a result, the activities of criminal groups targeting travellers may be increasing, so please be careful,” the advisory issued in the Japanese language stated.
“If you are contacted by a stranger in a foreign country, please be careful not to easily trust them as they may be suspicious of fraud. In the vicinity of Anjuna Beach in Goa, multiple people colluded, accused travellers of possessing drugs such as marijuana, made them into criminals, and robbed them of cash, smartphones, credit cards, etc. increase. If you are approached by a stranger at your travel destination, be suspicious of them as scammers and avoid joining them,” the advisory stated.
As a modus operandi, a criminal group approach foreign tourists posing as tourists, and after gaining their trust by directing kind acts such as tourist information, inviting them to go to a friend’s apartment, etc. After disguising joint possession of marijuana and other drugs, a colleague who plays the role of a police officer appears, threatens violence as a criminal suspect, confines the victim in a room in an apartment, and demands cash, a smartphone, a credit card, and a personal identification number. Please be aware that multiple individuals will work together to approach the traveller.
The Consulate General of Japan in Mumbai has also mentioned its address and other contact details for any Japanese tourists requiring help.