Can Barcelona shake off its reputation as the ‘bag-snatching capital’? Inside the city's new plan

Barcelona has unveiled a new plan to tackle crime over the summer, as the number of tourists – and crimes against tourists – return to pre-pandemic levels.

Under ‘Operation Summer’, the city council announced there will be 12 per cent more police officers on the busiest streets than last year, and tougher sentences against repeat robbers.

The Catalonian capital is notoriously rife with pickpockets. In 2018 there were an average of 12 robberies an hour, according to Spain’s interior ministry. The large drop-off in street robberies in 2021 – plummeting by 56 per cent compared to 2019 – suggests the ebb in tourists was a big contributor.

Now, as visitors are once

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