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WARNING - Bogus Policemen

Stirling, Scotland
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179 posts
55 reviews
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WARNING - Bogus Policemen

I have just returned from Bratislava and narrowly escaped having my cash and credit cards stolen by a gang of 3 men. One approched posing as a tourist looking for a bank and then the other 2 pounced shouting that they were policemen and asking very aggresively for passports and cards to prove our identity. One was portly, dressed in a beige raincoat, one younger dressed in jeans with a man bag and the 'tourist' wore a sports type jacket. I reported it to the police, spent three and a half hours in police stations to be told that in Bratislava posing as a policeman to rob tourists isn't a big deal. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!

Bratislava, Slovakia
Destination Expert
for Bratislava
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2,340 posts
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1. Re: WARNING - Bogus Policemen

What a terrible experience, it must have been pretty scary. Do you remember where it happened? And what was the outcome - did you scare them off?

However, if there are any people thinking off coming to Bratislava, I wouldn't be too worried about this. I've lived here over a year and I've never seen or heard about any scams (there is a funny guy doing that 'gold ring' thing, but its not exactly a scam)

Its an extremely safe city, and as horrible as these things are, I would say they are extremely rare. Still, not a nice thing to happen...

Stirling, Scotland
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179 posts
55 reviews
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2. Re: WARNING - Bogus Policemen

We were going towards St Martin's Cathedral - which is being renovated at the moment - from Rybne Namestie. we had almost got to the top of the steps when the first man approached us. His cohorts must have been hiding in the gloom of the covered walkway in front of the cathedral.

I don't think they expected me to notice that my cards were being pocketed and when I shouted and put my hand in his pocket I probably did scare him.

We are trying to make light of it now but it has left us shaken.

I could not believe that it is no big deal in Slovakia for anyone to impersonate a policeman in order to commit crime!

Thanks for your concern

Bratislava, Slovakia
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for Bratislava
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3. Re: WARNING - Bogus Policemen

It was a pretty cheeky thing to do! Although it's quite quiet there, its not exactly deserted...

I've luckily never really had any contact with the Slovak police, but from what people tell me they are pretty useless. (although there are plenty of them about)

Brno, Czech Republic
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for Czech Republic, Slovakia, Train Travel
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29,088 posts
15 reviews
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4. Re: WARNING - Bogus Policemen

They are pretty useless, except at taking bribes. I usually drive either a Czech or an Austrian-registered car (if I drive there at all), which immediately makes you more 'attractive' - I have been diddled a couple of times and I kicked myself afterwards as I fell for it hook, line and sinker. The last couple of times, though, I have started to write down their numbers/car registration and any offence supposedly committed miraculously turns into a 'Have a nice day, sir'.

I have never seen or heard of anything such as you describe in Bratislava, though, but I have seen something similar in Prague.

Did you have an interpreter with the police? NB the standard of interpreters employed by the police is generally pretty low, so take it with a pinch of salt that they said it was 'no big deal', even if they said it themselves. However, I wouldn't put my mortgage on them doing a lot about it. There is quite a visible police presence with nice new cars, etc., but it is more posing than anything else.

5. Re: WARNING - Bogus Policemen

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