This weeks round up of the local news from Fethiye, Oludeniz, Hisaronu and area includes bike bag thieves nabbed, people smugglers arrested, bootleg booze found in local bars and more.
Bag Grabbing Boy Duo Nabbed by Police
Two young men aged 15 and 18 were finally caught this week after almost two months of grabbing handbags and getting away on a stolen motorbike.
Their final victim, a young Turkish woman, was walking along the street in Foca, Fethiye when they approached on the bike, grabbed her bag and rode off.
The bag contained 2,500TL and a camera, which she was taking to her father.
Police then instigated a major search for the two young men, on the bike with no number plates, and were finally successful.
People Smugglers Charged – 60 Detained in Coastguard Operation off Fethiye
Another yacht smuggling refugees out of the country was followed by the Coast Guard and then seized some six miles out at sea.
The 12m sailing boat, registered in Göcek, turned out to have 60 refugees on board all trying to reach Italy.
They comprised 51 Afghanis, 5 Iranians, 1 Syrian and 3 Palestinians, who all told authorities they were fleeing war in their own countries and going to join relatives already settled in Europe.
The group included 24 children, 15 women and 21 men who were all taken ashore by the Coast Guard and handed over to the Jandarma, along with the two men working on board the yacht.
A day later another three Turkish men were arrested and charged in this matter.
Close But No Cigar
Seems we have a major deja vu situation this week, as not only have we reported refugees on boats before, but have also written about people getting stuck climbing in and out of Butterfly Valley – and that has also happened yet again.
Two young male university students hitch hiked down from a town near Istanbul, to spend a holiday camping in Butterfly Valley.
They climbed down from the Faralya road to within a thousand feet of the valley bottom, then got stuck.
Luckily they had just enough charge left on a mobile phone to call the Jandarma before the phone died.
Then they sat and waited for AKUT and the Jandarma to rescue them.
Apparently the route down to the valley is way marked but this unlucky pair had taken a different path, and not seen any of the painted way mark signs.
The head of AKUT told local press that ‘something should be done’ about signage on the route in and out of the valley.
Bootleg Booze Found in Göcek and Hisarönü
Also yet again the Jandarma carried out a bootleg alcohol search in bars in Göcek and Hisarönü.
The search took place after dark when the bars were full of tourists, and resulted in the confiscation of 65 bottles of bootleg alcohol, and fines were issued to 7 bar managers.
Fire Fighting Capacity Back
The fire fighting helicopter destroyed in a crash last week, in which all five men on board were killed, has been replaced with a new helicopter and four new pilots have been employed.
The local head of the Forestry Commission told press that they were once again ready to fight forest fires.
Tesco KIPA Opens Second Shop in Fethiye
And for any Fethiye-based reader who does not yet know – the new KIPA opposite the Court building opened on Thursday at 9am.
Fethiye now has two branches of KIPA the Turkish supermarket owned by British retailer Tesco.
It is open 24 hours, so Çalış residents who have difficulty sleeping on hot nights, can now go and shop till they drop.