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Albufeira fire chief slams scammers collecting money ‘for the Bombeiros’

bombeirosThe head of the Albufeira Bomberios is outraged by the wave of dodgy people asking for money, fooling motorists and pedestrians that they are fundraising for the local fire service.

These “mercenaries” have invaded the streets, often “wearing uniforms that even have the name of the institution,” said Commander António Coelho, denouncing these organised groups that “usurp the image” of firefighters in a “clearly malicious strategy.”

Coelho has called on the authorities to end the practice taking place on public roads in Albufeira and elsewhere across the Algarve.

According to the bold commander, these scammers wear clothing that makes them look like firemen, deliberately to confuse people.

“For a long time firefighters have been harmed by organised groups that accost pedestrians through aggressive and untransparent sales of raffle tickets on public streets, in strategic locations, harassing people,” said António Coelho, pointing out that these approaches are made “near fire stations and on roads in urban areas with high traffic and pedestrian traffic.”

“We can mention, for example, an organised group, initially called the Portuguese Association of Veterans of War, and that now, with the same people involved, it already ‘represents’ another association using the same mode of operation,” said Coelho, stressing that his firefighters have received “many complaints from citizens who say that people approach them using the word “firemen” or “ambulance” in order to ask for money.