Express kidnapping is on the rise. Over the last years, its prevalence has been widespread across Latin America but latest statistics demonstrate an increase in the number of cases occurring in North America, one of the most recent having taken place in Florida.
An Express Kidnap occurs when an individual is targeted, captured and held for a period of, usually, hours. The perpetrator hasn’t necessarily planned the kidnap and may not have anywhere to hold the victim so the crime tends to be for small amounts of cash obtained within a short period of time. Often, the victim is taken to various ATMs and forced to withdraw cash or taken to their own home and forced to hand over valuables. The crimes can be violent and victims are often drugged in the process..
The criminals will often be looking for key indicators when selecting a victim so it is important to not only be aware of what they may be looking for and try to avoid it but to also know how to deal with such an event should you become victim to it.
We have put together a list of some of, what we feel, are useful tips and advice:Avoid all company logos on clothing, cars and visible documents or equipment. The profile of the company means that the logo is a wealth indicator and tells the street criminal that you represent a high profile organisation with cash and may pay dearly for your release.
- Avoid all company logos on clothing, cars and visible documents or equipment. The profile of the company means that the logo is a wealth indicator and tells the street criminal that you represent a high profile organisation with cash and may pay dearly for your release.
- Do not carry company Logo business cards in your wallet; in a street robbery the criminal will see your rank and grade upon opening it and a telephone number to ring and demand money – so avoid all logos and mention of rank.
- Limit cash withdrawal on all of your credit and debit card.
- Consider a tracking device and panic alarm on your cell phone.
- Have two safes in the house – one obvious with a few documents and some cash/valuables, the other hidden with the real wealth.
- Use a family duress code that you can use in a telephone conversation that indicates to your family that you are a hostage and are potentially being forced to bring kidnappers home with you. This gives the family time to escape the house and raise the alarm.
- At night, avoid walking alone. If you have to walk, only do so in well illuminated areas and always walk towards oncoming traffic, that way no car can approach you from behind and grab you into the car.
- Be cautious if you are involved in a slight ‘bump’ in your car at a road junction for example. Never get out of the car to talk to the other person or persons involved – these are classic carjacking and Express Kidnap tactics
We hope that the above recommendations would help you both avoid and deal with an event but cannot guarantee the outcome in any way. We have extensive experience of clients who have found themselves in similar situations, so please drop us a line for any more information / questions you may have and we will try to help:
Or call us:
0044 (0) 1223 200678