Foreign thieves rip off backpackers

‘Sebastian’ and ‘Florian’ caught on the Mount Backpackers CCTV. Supplied image.

A pair of foreign travellers have ripped off a local backpackers after failing to return surfing equipment that was rented to them.

Mount Backpackers owner Jo Veale says she rented the gear to the young Europeans on Thursday afternoon.

“We're much more careful usually. Our guests are okay because we keep all of their details. But these guys just walked in off the street.”

For $70 ‘Sebastian' and ‘Florian' rented two surfboards and wetsuits with a total retail value of $1800.

“They must have been watching a little bit, because they waited until the office was full of people and we were really busy. Normally we take passports or some kind of ID. They gave me their car keys [as collateral], and pointed to a Mitsubishi outside that was theirs. But the car disappeared later that afternoon, and I didn't realise anything was wrong until 8pm when it was dark,” says Jo.

“They initially wanted an advance-level surfboard, but one of the girls they were talking to said no, because they hadn't surfed before. But it makes me think they wanted to sell the boards.”

She says everyone she's spoken to has told her Sebastian and Florian are common French names; but one German man who was in the office at the time told her the pair were definitely German, not French.

Taking to social media, Jo is trying her best to track the boys down and get her gear back.

“I've contacted all the backpackers and hostels in Auckland and in the surf centres such as Gisborne, Taranaki, New Plymouth, and they've all replied back saying they'll keep an eye out.”

They were last seen around the Raglan area. Most perplexing, though, are the car keys she was left with, which may have been a spare set from a rental.

“The keys had Mitsubishi on the keyring, and I even made a joke that it would be a pretty cheap exchange – a Mitsubishi for two boards,” she says.

“But they got away with both.”

If you recognise either Sebastian or Florian, or have seen them about, get in touch with Jo via the Mount Backpackers Facebook page, or phone the police.



3 Comments

Lay a charge of theft

Posted on 21-03-2017 12:54 | By Lvdw

Lay a charge of theft with the police because there may be a slim chance that they get identified and then can be stopped at our borders via the customs and immigration.Then take everything they own, and sell it to re-coup the money and deport them with the clothes on their backs.

I Agree

Posted on 21-03-2017 12:51 | By Summerfreeze

Yes Papamoaner, Don't muck around with a trial, the judge will slap them on the wrist with a wet bus ticket anyway. Deport them immediately, the day they are caught.

Don't muck around

Posted on 20-03-2017 20:04 | By Papamoaner

Find them, deport them, media splash them in their own country. I don't want to pay for these scum to stay in our prisons.

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An afternoon surf. Photo by Josh Casey. Send us your photos from around the Bay of Plenty. photos@thesun.co.nz