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Torrevieja Mayor Disappointed by Lack of Police Resources Response



The Mayor of Torrevieja, Eduardo Dolón, has publicly denounced the Government sub-delegation for failing to provide members of the Security Forces to stop the peddling of fake products, namely the infamous “lookie lookie” men.

This is of course not a new problem for Torrevieja, or any coastal town for that matter. What is new is that Dolón appears to be blaming the national security bodies for the problem, when it had been dealt with historically by his own Local Police, albeit with support from the likes of the Guardia Civil.

A decade ago, Dolón posed for photographs at Torrevieja´s Ecopark, to prove their commitment to cracking down on illegal street traders and the selling of counterfeit material throughout the summer, showing off 10,291 confiscated counterfeited objects which were being destroyed.

Clamping down a decade ago

Although the actions by the Local Police in Torrevieja were effective, there was a problem with riots and fighting at times, and accusations that their actions were simply moving the problem along the coast, but still, it was the Local Police who were front and centre of the campaign, something which Dolón seems to have forgotten.

Prior to that photocall, in 2012, Dolón praised himself for setting up the elite Grupo de Refuerzo Operativo, the task force who were left to deal with such problems as the plagues of “lookie lookie” men. Although that too was not without controversy, initially the G.R.O. were assigned minibuses for their patrols, vehicles which were originally destined for the disabled residents of the town to be provided with transport, and then a number of the 20-strong squad left and returned to normal duties some two years later as they were not adequately rewarded for their additional services, a spokesperson for the union representing the officers said at the time, nor were they compensated for the extra time worked.

There was also political infighting and problems with between officers and the previous council lead, Eduardo Gil Rebollo, which had also spiralled into both a personal battle and resulted in times where there were no police on the streets, but action was taken against the offenders, rather than the plan to fine those who purchase the goods, effectively criminalising the victims of crime.

Despite the problems and the controversy, the actions seemingly worked, as in 2014, it was reported that Torrevieja´s local police had now considerably scaled down their operation against the “lookie lookie men”, as they now consider the issue to be nothing more than a “residual problem”.

A senior police officer with the force at the time, Vicente Gutiérrez, says that political pressure exerted during the last year to clear the streets of the vendors has virtually disappeared, again, thanks to the actions of the Local Police.

Back to present day, Dolón clearly doesn’t see the actions as falling into the jurisdiction of the Local Police anymore, for reasons he has not made clear, as the meeting this week was to highlight the need for coordination between the Security Forces and Bodies to prevent the street sale of counterfeit products. Dolón wanted to publicly show his discomfort with the Government sub-delegation due to the lack of troops and existing means to tackle this serious problem that not only Torrevieja has, but also all the coastal towns.

The Local Security Board was held in the Salón de Planos del Ayuntamiento de Torrevieja, but with the absence of the sub-delegate of the Government in Alicante, Araceli Poblador, who excused attendance for “agenda reasons”.

The mayor has stressed that the intervention of the National Police in this problem is also necessary, given that more than 1/3 of the people who sell illegal products do not have their documentation in order, and so are irregular in their foreign status.

The Councillor for Security, Federico Alarcón, has shown a dossier that he was going to deliver today to the Government sub-delegate with photographs of how the Torrevieja promenades are full of sellers of illegal products, and that in their absence he will send to the Sub-delegation.

Finally, both the mayor and the Councillor for Security complained that in recent years an increase in the number of members of the Security Forces has been personally and officially requested from the Government sub-delegation in Alicante on many occasions, but never provided.

It should perhaps be noted that Dolón played an active part in both the Alicante provincial Government, and now the Valencia regional Government, but seems powerless, according to his own admissions from this meeting, to resolve one of the matters he again promised to deal with in his latest election campaign. It should also be pointed out that Torrevieja boasts an extensive CCTV network, although that too seems blind to the forms of criminality mentioned.

The post Torrevieja Mayor Disappointed by Lack of Police Resources Response appeared first on News, Sport, Information, Property, Business in Spain – News, Sport, Spanish Property for Sale, Business Directory, Classifieds, and Advertising for Spain.



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