Photographs taken by a member of the public show the shocking moment a woman was mugged by two teenage girls as she tried to get money out from a cashpoint.
The two thieves, thought to be Roma gypsies, pushed the unidentified victim away, grabbed her cash and calmly walked away, while onlookers did nothing to intervene in the robbery.
The incident in Paris happened on Wednesday and, although the woman being mugged was able to grab one of the assailants by the jumper, she was otherwise powerless to stop them from taking her money.
Sadly, incidents like these have now become almost a daily occurrence in the French capital and were clearly of no surprise or concern to bystanders, since they did nothing to help the woman.
Paris authorities have vowed to clamp down on crimes of this nature, in which gypsies prey on crowds of tourists to steal their money and valuables, and a trial of two Romanian women who allegedly coordinated hundreds of thefts across the city is ongoing.
Politicians including France’s Socialist Prime Minister, Manuel Valls, have publicly branded those carrying out these crimes as foreigners who “cannot integrate” into the French way of life.
However, his attempts to raze Roma camps and deport as many of their occupants as possible has been met with protests from a number of human rights groups.
A spokesman for Charity group Catholic Help said clampdowns on Roma “stigmatised a poor community” and amounted to “racial profiling” – something which is actually illegal in France.
No doubt the debate on this one will rumble on in France, especially if robberies like this continue to be commonplace.
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