Tourists in Portugal’s Algarve have been warned to be on their guard after the death of a British man who was badly beaten in a street attack in the popular resort of Albufeira.
The 50-year-old tourist died in hospital last week, and police have linked the incident to at least two further attacks, including one fatality, by the same gang.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has now revised its travel guidance to Britons travelling to the Algarve and warned them to remain alert at all times.
A spokeswoman for the FCO said: “Clearly the death is a matter of concern and the way he died. We are concerned about the possibility of violent attacks and take this matter very seriously. We have updated our travel advice to warn against the possibility of violent attacks and are in contact with the police and local authorities.”
Ian Haggarth, from Newcastle, suffered fatal head injuries in an attack by four people feared to be from the same gang that attacked and killed another Briton, Darren Lackie, 22, in March and stabbed an Irish tourist, who survived, a few days later.
All three men were attacked in Albufeira’s nightlife district, Montechoro.
About 1.6 million Britons travel to Portugal each year and in its travel advice for people travelling to the Algarve the FCO says that the number of violent attacks in Portugal is low but that there is still a need to take care.
It states: “Be aware that alcohol and drugs can make you less alert, less in control and less aware of your environment. If you are going to drink, know your limit and remember that drinks served in bars overseas are often much stronger than those in the UK. Street crime is occasionally accompanied by violence. Remain alert and guard valuable personal items at all times.”
Ian Haggarth was walking back to his hotel in the early hours of the morning when he was attacked on 15 May. Three holiday-makers found him lying unconscious in the street and tried to give him first aid after calling an ambulance. The attack had left him with a fractured skull, bleeding on the brain and broken cheek bones.