A wave of crime in southern Tel Aviv, particularly the old Central Bus Station area, led Tel Aviv police to kick off a campaign aimed at reducing the rate of attacks.
As part of the campaign, undercover officers were placed in the area to see if they could lure out criminals.
A female officer who was stationed near the Central Bus Station late Wednesday night barely had to wait. Within an hour, she was approached by two foreign men who asked her to perform a sex act on them.
When she refused, they attempted to touch her anyway, then grabbed her phone and purse, kicked her in the face, and ran off.
The two were quickly chased down and captured by police officers who had been hiding nearby. They were caught with the stolen items in hand.
One of the suspects is in his early 30s, and the other is in his late 20s. Neither suspect’s name has been released.
The wave of crime in southern Tel Aviv has been linked to the massive influx of illegal African immigrants to the area. In March 2013 Border Police forces were sent to the area in an attempt to reduce the number of attacks.
Many Israeli residents of southern Tel Aviv fear that a Supreme Court decision allowing illegal infiltrators to walk free from holding centers will mean fresh troubles. An organization has filed an appeal on residents’ behalf calling to keep new infiltrators out of the city, citing residents’ fear for their safety even in daylight.