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2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
Acacio Paz, the hospitalero from Brasil who with his wife owns and runs an albergue in the French Camino has asked that the following notice (roughly translated from Spanish, and in part) be passed on:

If someone registers in an albergue as Alberto Ferreira de Silva, Portugues, 41-years old ,a cook by profession and extremely likeable, the Civil Guard should be notified as once. This individual, who carries a pilgrim's credential with several stamps on it, has "struck" several albergues and institutions in the Camino and will continue to do so if not stopped. He just stole 500 Euros from the Fundacion Vivir (Foundation "To live") that had given him shelter and invited him to dinner. Because of his winning ways, and his eagerness to help out and be of use in the albergues, he becomes acquiainted with where and how items of value may be kept, and proceeds to take them.
- there have been other, similar robberies in albergues recently....."

If it is any consolation, this sort of thing has been going on forever. There is a book called "Picardias en el Camino en la Edad Media" (Chicaneries in the Camino in the Middle Ages) which recounts extraordinary, sometimes funny and sometimes hair-raising,
instances of this sort of thing, and worse, in the Middle Ages.
Because of the possibility that these types of activities will multiply next year (a Holy Year), the Archdiocese, the Xunta, the authorities in the various municipalities which the various routes of the Camino traverse and the Guardia Civil will tighten and more than double the security measures throughout the Camino, as well as the means of communication.
In fact, the augmented and expanded security measures in the city of Santiago will go into effect in two weeks because of the huge crowds expected there for the opening of the Holy Door.
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This is very odd.

Has this man been seen only on the Camino Frances or has been on other routes also? Am asking this because when I was in the Salamanca albergue at the end of October, I met a Portuguese cook in his early forties who was a lot of fun (very lively and, indeed, likeable) - him and I spent most of the afternoon together (at the Museum of Art Deco & Art Nouveau and then just hanging around the city)... He was extremely hyperactive. Apparently he had just walked the Camino Frances, and had come down from Santiago to Salamanca to walk the upper half of the Via de la Plata. When he left the next morning he told me he'd be walking to Calzada de Valdunciel that night (which is where I had planned to stay) but to another pilgrim he said he was going to take the bus to El Cubo del Vino (30km away). I never saw him again after Salamanca. I wonder if this was the same man..... The stupid thing is I cannot remember his name.
well... just this week two drugged-out "pilgrims" stayed at the refuge in Zamora and ransacked the hospitalero´s room on their way out of town. Took his laptop and all kinds of important things.

Heads up, folks. Looks like they are heading north.

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Details from Brian, the hospitalero there:

"Two others to be aware of are: Jose Luis Garcia Nieto of Donostia, and Gabriel Gabarri Jimenez of Irun. They are apparently homeless and drug addicts and may be trying to use camino albergues for shelter and a source of ´´funds´´ to fuel their habits. If anyone happens to encounter either of them, there are charges filed against them for a robbery at the municipal albergue at Zamora. Thanks"
Canuck said:
isabelle304 said:
Has this man been seen only on the Camino Frances or has been on other routes also?

Indeed, he has been active on other caminos. See here: http://www.mundicamino.com/
And the description fits your man pretty well.

Thanks for the link, Jean-Marc. Am now 99% sure it was indeed the same guy - "my" Portuguese cook told me he worked in a hotel in the Canary Islands, so it all seems to tally. I am a bit speechless actually - the guy was so likeable! I can normally sense when someone is a bit dodgy but with this one I was absolutely taken in :shock:
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Luckily, he didn't rob or scam you. This goes to show you can never trust somebody just on looks or behaviours, unless that guy is not the real culprit.

Canuck said:

Mundicamino is now showing a picture of ''your man''.
Can you recognize him?

Thanks Jean-Marc. Sadly, this is indeed the really nice man I met in Salamanca. In the photo below, which I took at the Salamanca albergue just before I left, you can just about see the back of him looking up at the stairs - you can recognise the blue jacket and the haircut. I've checked my diary for that period and I see I correctly refer to him in the diary as "Carlos" (rather than Alberto, which was the name initially mentioned by Mundicamino, before they updated it to Alberto Carlos). I now understand why he could take such long holidays from his "job" to walk two caminos in succession - the job simply did not exist! He also mentioned to me he had plans to walk the Via Francigena to Rome during 2010 - am not sure if he meant it or not but if he did, he might resurface in some places along that route!


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Jean- Marc

I was unable to find the picture on the link given.

Looks like the article has been removed - I saw it and read it in Spanish the 12th of December on the Mundicamino
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