HK tourists safe after armed robbers raid luxury Peru resort

February 22, 2019 12:59
The Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica hotel in Peru was hosting two tour groups from Hong Kong when an armed robbery incident (inset, CCTV footage) took place on Tuesday. Photos: Internet, Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica

Around 40 Hong Kong tourists found themselves caught up in an armed robbery incident that took place in a luxury Peruvian resort this week, but thankfully all of them emerged safe from the ordeal.

As per the Travel Industry Council of Hong Kong, all the Hongkongers escaped unhurt after a gang of masked robbers raided a Peru hotel on Tuesday night.

The tourists took refuge in the hotel kitchen, hiding out until the robbery was over, according to an RTHK report, which cited a travel agency executive.

While the tourists were unscathed, a local tour guide, however, was not so lucky as he ended up dead, the report said.

The tour guide was believed to have been shot at by the robbers as had been wearing a uniform and the criminal gang mistook him for a security guard.  

Peru media reported this week that on Tuesday, at 8:20 pm local time, around 10 masked men carrying firearms broke into the Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica hotel, located on a tributary of the Amazon in the Madre de Dios region in eastern Peru, which is 1,600 kilometers away from Lima.

The masked men reportedly came from Venezuela and Colombia and belonged to Comando Vermelho, a notorious gang that is active in South America.

Among the occupants of the hotel at that time were 41 people from Hong Kong, members of two tour groups whose trips had been organized by Hong Kong travel agencies -- Jetour and Premium Holidays. 

The chairman of the hotel chain was quoted by a local newspaper as saying that one of its managers took all of the 53 guests, including the Hong Kong tourists, in the resort at that time to a secure location quickly and successfully shielded them from potential attacks by the armed robbers.

However, a local guide was allegedly shot 13 times and died on the spot before the armed robbers fled the scene 30 minutes later with cash and valuables ahead of the arrival of police.

A manhunt has been launched for the robbers.

According to Alice Chan, executive director the Travel Industry Council, none of the Hong Kong tourists was hurt during the robbery, but one person lost a passport and another lost a mobile phone.

The two Hong Kong tourist groups are said to have decided to continue their tours despite the incident.

In a statement, the Chinese Embassy in Lima said no Chinese nationals were injured in the incident, RTHK reported.

Hong Kong's Immigration Department said that it received a request from a Hongkonger for reissuance of a passport following the incident.

The department said it will provide appropriate assistance to the applicant after confirming the details.

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