Thanks for all this great info.
I’ve travelled in many countries and am very streetwise. Though while in Barcelona my partner and I were at an outdoor street restaurant near La Sagrada Familia at 10pm.
Totally empty street and a few folk at other tables. I had my shoulder bag at my feet and usually would have had it on my lap or tied to the chair – but as the street was completely empty and I’d see anyone approaching it seemed unnecessary.
Our drinks arrived and the two Spainish waiters slammed them down on the table and roughly rearranged the menus and other stuff on the table to distract us. Moments later I realised my bag was gone.
At the time I didn’t suspect the waiters as it seemed too risky an act for them to pull off, though in hindsight it was obvious it had to be them. My wallet was in the bag along with a few other personal items and the cards were tried at an atm within minutes – but they tried to take out 500€ and the banks froze the cards in response.
I challenged the waiters and owner the next night and it was obviously them but they had the upper hand in numbers and aggression/violent nature and I valued keeping my teeth.
So it’s not just the Eastern Europeans as you suggest in your film who are at it. Spainish waiters in good restaurants with trip advisor reputation are also helping themselves.