Kidnappers In Venezuela Act As Car Dealers To Trap Victims

In Venezuela, there has been a new wave of violent crimes that have required Venezuelan police intervention. Gang members are posing as car dealers online, at which point the thugs carry out crimes.  Often, gang members might post an ad for motorcycles and cars for sale on social media; the interested buyer and the gang member will agree on a meeting spot, and when the buyer arrives, they are often kidnapped or robbed with the criminals demanding large sums of money from victims’ families.

Douglas Rico, head of the Venezuelan criminal investigation unit, took to Instagram by offering buyers the opportunity to use police stations to finalize transactions.

According to data in Venezuela, a high percent of kidnappings take place on Facebook Marketplace. Unfortunately, some of the buyers who fall prey to the scam have been discovered dead. And earlier this year, Venezuela police said two army personnel and three other civilians were murdered in one week after being lured by an advertisement for cars.

 The Venezuelan capital is said to be the focal point of most crimes, in addition to Vargas and Miranda, two neighboring states that have also recorded many crimes linked to social media.

But according to the Associated Press, many citizens in Venezuela have opted to not carry cash so that muggers might be less tempted to harm them.  Another reason for the reduced crime rate is the economic crisis and the fact that many criminal gangs cannot afford ammunition due to a lack of funds.

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