An allegedly drunken tourist has upset authorities in Cartagena after mounting a statue of one of Colombia’s most famous sculptors naked.
The incident happened early Sunday morning on the colonial city’s Santo Domingo plaza, located in the heart of the city’s tourist district.
A local tourism operator took photos of the naked man sitting on Fat Gertrudis, a statue donated in 2000 by sculptor Fernando Botero.
There were four people, two men and two women. They were drunk and, probably because they did not see the police, one of them did not mind undressing and climbing the “fat lady”. I shouted: “Get off! Show some respect!” but he ignored it. I immediately called the police, but when they arrived the people had already left.
Tourism worker Carlos Arteaga
Police commander General Humberto Poveda told local media officers were trying to locate the tourist and could expel him and ban his return for 10 years for the act of indecency.
Cartagena’s interim mayor called on locals to report misbehaving tourists.
We do not want a predatory tourism that threatens the heritage of Cartagena and serves as a bad example for more vandalism. The call is to report so that the police authorities take immediate action and this type of tourists think twice before disrespecting the citizens’ environment.
Interim Mayor Jhony Ordosgoitia
The mayor stressed that “most tourists fortunately are decent” and warned he would talk to both tourism and police authorities to prevent incidents like the one on Sunday.
Local shopkeepers have said that the square has been without police at night after a local government order to increse police presence around the Plaza de los Coches, which has seen an explosion of tourism.
A sharp increase in tourism has also caused an increase with incidents involving tourists in the city.
Multiple foreigners have run into authorities on charges they had sex with minors. One foreigner was arrested for taking a dump in the central Bolivar square in 2015. A second foreigner was arrested in the same year when walking through the city naked while on drugs.