This Is What Happens When You Steal Surfboards In Portugal - Stab Mag

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This Is What Happens When You Steal Surfboards In Portugal

“The best type of punishment for them is not by the law.”

news // Sep 13, 2021
Words by Michael Ciaramella
Reading Time: 4 minutes
steal surfboard
*Cops theme song plays* Art by @joystain

Recently, we published an article called ‘How to Steal a Surfboard.’ The idiots you’re about to read about clearly did not learn anything from it.

“There were these rich German guys in a big RV, and they raided three surf shops in Cascais, one after the other,” Nic von Rupp told us about an incident that has gained much traction in the Portuguese surfing world.

“But because the surf community is so tight here, the surf shops communicated with each other, like, ‘Hey, I just got robbed.’ So when these German guys got to the third shop, all the locals knew about it, and something like 30 guys came and stopped them.

“They got caught with all the boards in their RV, and they got the shit beaten out of them,” Nic continued. “Then the cops showed up, took the guys into custody, and they slept in jail for the night.”

You might be wondering what the punishment for stealing boards from multiple surf shops in Portugal is. Us too. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like we’re gonna find out.

“Today they were scheduled for court, but charges had to get dropped because a video of the guy getting slapped was leaked*,” Nic said. “So these guys just get to walk free, and they’re still just cruising around here like nothing happened. The whole of Portugal is on top of those guys right now, wanting them out of the country, and they just showed up in Peniche.

“It just sucks, man,” Nic continued. “The people they stole from are working class. They work really hard, and owning a physical surf shop isn’t easy. And then these rich tourists come into the shop and steal the boards. I know this shit happens if it’s one bad person, but four guys wanting to do that is just sickening.”

We also chatted with a local shop owner, who wished not to be named, but who assisted in the thieves’ apprehension.

“For us, just getting these guys’ faces out on the internet is the best punishment. It’s way better than them getting fined by the courts. We want people to know that if this happens in our neighborhood, or anywhere in Portugal, it will not be tolerated, and you will be caught and humiliated. Just like the guy who tried to steal the pros’ boards at the WSL event in Peniche a few years ago.”

The culprits.
And their vehicle.

You might also be wondering how a group of traveling Germans managed to steal surfboards from two, almost three, surf shops in broad daylight without getting apprehended. Like…just in a logistical sense.

“A couple of the guys would distract the shop workers by luring them into some back corner of the store and then the other two would grab the boards and walk out with them,” Nic explained.

As if it has to be stated, this is despicable behavior, far worse even than borrowing a friend’s dad’s longboard, spray-painting it black, and refusing to return it for months on end. Especially when you consider that these Germans are clearly not lacking for cash (hence their state-of-the-art RV complete with basketed rental bikes dangling off the back).

“When we caught them, they tried to give us money for the boards,” the local surf shop owner told us. “We said, ‘We don’t want your money. But if you had money in the first place, you should have just bought the boards.'”

One has to wonder what the Germans’ end game was here. Did they plan to sell the surfboards and split a profit of…a couple thousand dollars? Or maybe were they foolish enough to believe they could ride the boards in Portugal without being caught. There is a pretty nice swell coming on Thursday, but it feels like there was probably a less stressful way to get a surf in.

Our surf shop source summed it up nicely: “I think they are probably just really big idiots.”

Whatever the reason, these four will never live down their actions and would be smart to get out of the country sooner rather than later. Portugal clearly has a low tolerance for bullshit, and whether it’s by the hand, the law, or the internet, they will make sure you pay the price for your misdeeds.

*Not by Stab, but we’re posting it now since the situation has reached its legal conclusion.

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