‘Burglary Tourism’ Teams Striking Wealthy Homes in California

Ground Picture / shutterstock.com
Ground Picture / shutterstock.com

Tourism is finally making a comeback in the dump known as Los Angeles! Unfortunately, it’s not the sort of tourism that any normal person would want to invite to their city. According to the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), teams from South America have been flying into the City of Angels to engage in ‘burglary tourism.’ They show up, rob the homes of wealthy Americans, sell the swag in local pawn shops, and wire tens of thousands of dollars back home to South America.

LAPD Deputy Chief Alan Hamilton says, “South American theft groups are not new in L.A., but they have become more active in recent months.”

Hamilton adds that the evidence points to scores of burglaries being committed by these foreign teams. There was a rash of 94 burglaries committed in the subdivisions of Porter Ranch and Granada Hills recently, north of the 118 freeway. Hamilton notes that many of the burglaries were likely committed by these foreign crews.

LAPD Chief Dominic Choi says the increase in burglary tourism cases has been “significant.” The burglars target wealthy neighborhoods and look specifically for things like expensive jewelry, which is easy to fence. The criminals are also unarmed because they know that the communist District Attorney in Los Angeles, George Gascon, will release them without requiring them to post bail if they’re arrested while not carrying guns.

The perfect example is the accused burglary tourism suspect Felipe Leiva Solis. The 33-year-old is a Chilean national, and police believe he is the ringleader of a large burglary tourism ring. Police say Solis has been tied to at least 30 burglaries in swanky West Los Angeles. Solis is in the country on a tourist visa. The cops say he used a fake passport to set up a Bank of America account and wired tens of thousands of dollars back to Chile.

In December, police nabbed three alleged members of Solis’s crew near Coldwater Canyon Drive south of Mulholland. As a manhunt for a Beverly Hills burglary was taking place, the three men were caught in a Ford Explorer loaded with stolen designer purses, clothing, watches, and jewelry. Police estimate the loot came from a single burglary in the Hollywood Hills and was valued at close to $1 million.

Solis was first arrested for a burglary back in August of 2023 when he was caught after breaking into a woman’s home. He was immediately released without bail. Since there didn’t appear to be any consequences for committing burglary in LA, Solis decided to press his luck. It was only after being tied to dozens of additional burglaries that Los Angeles finally decided to hold him without bail. Whether that will last, however, is an open question.

Tons of celebrities and wealthy Los Angelenos have been burglarized in recent months, many of them by these foreign burglary tourism squads. They include Instagram model Corinna Kopf, Motley Crue rocker Tommy Lee, rapper Megan The Stallion, comedian Arsenio Hall, tattoo icon Kat Von D, model Abigail Ratchford, Baywatch star Alexandra Daddario, and actor Casey Affleck. Call it a hunch, but we’re guessing many of these celebrities are now wishing they hadn’t advocated so heavily for defunding the police in 2020. You reap what you sow.

As for the burglary tourists, can you blame them? Why wouldn’t you fly to a foreign country where you can rob the rich and famous, and they’re so stupid that they won’t put you in jail for it, let alone deport you back to your home country?