Brazilian beaten by thieves for stopping crime, as dozens of Chinese and 2 chengguan look on
As a pickpocket snuck his hands into a woman’s handbag, a Brazilian man intervened to stop the theft. His act riled the thief and his two accomplices, all of whom ganged up to assault him with sticks and leather belts. About two dozens of passersby stood by and watched with folded arms. Two uniformed men patrolling several meters away, who were later found to be chengguan (city management officers), refused to step in. The Brazilian said he was “very disappointed and chilled.”
The head of the chengguan office later said to the media that chengguan have no authority to restrict individual freedom. Therefore, the two chengguan who did not intervene were not at fault.
According to local newspapers in Dongguan, Guangdong province, Miss Zhu, on her way to a gym, waited at a crossroads for a green light, when she suddenly heard noises behind her. She turned around to find several men, including a foreigner, getting into a street brawl. As she watched with much interest, onlookers told her that the foreigner was beaten exactly because of her; a thief unzipped her bag and was going to steal from her at the intersection. Many people saw it but kept mum anyway for fear of revenge. The foreigner was the only one that bothered to step in.
The foreigner, apparently outnumbered and overpowered by the thugs, ran into a shopping center to seek refuge, according to Li Liang, a solicitor at the entrance, before they arrived at his heels. One of them cudgeled the foreigner in the head. Another lashed his arms and back with a leather belt. A third one yelled abuse at all onlookers, “F**k off!”
Li Liang witnessed the entire process, which lasted about three minutes. He said there are at least 30 people at the scene, but no one had the nerve to stand up to the thugs. Not until the thieves left did people come to him and ask if he needed help.
The Brazilian, identified by the local media as Mozen, said, “Only by working together and helping one another can we let thieves know that they have to pay a price for committing a crime. But now things have taken the opposite course. Having this experience, I will not and dare not offer my help next time I am in a similar situation.”
Li Liang said that anyone would be afraid if he is to confront the thieves, each one of whom is believed to carry a knife, but if people worked together, the thieves would have been daunted. “Looking back, leaving a foreigner alone to these thieves is really a disgrace on Chinese people. If it happens next time, I will ask my colleagues along to stop them.”
Mr. Wang, who works nearby, disagrees, “When the foreigner was beaten, even the two officers who saw it clearly didn’t stop it. What are we ordinary people expected to do?” Mr. Wang, said that the key to public order lies in the police rather than in ordinary people.http://is.gd/BgvTm8