Watch Your Laptops! (New MO by Salisi Gang)

Hubby came home last night. “You have to blog this“, he said. Must be serious, I thought. He normally does not pay any attention to what I blog about.

And it turns out that he did have quite a story to tell. His Indian client’s laptop was stolen by a salisi gang IN THEIR VERY PRESENCE!

Read this and be more aware of your surroundings when you take your laptop outside of home:

Hubby, a lawyer and their Indian client held their meeting at Pancake House on the ground floor of Malayan Plaza (Ortigas Complex) yesterday.



They chose this place since it was close to the lawyer’s office at Discovery Suites. Hubby arrived first and got a table not too close to the door and facing the entrance. Soon after, he was joined by the lawyer and the client whose driver brought in a laptop bag. The client placed his laptop bag on the floor near his feet and sat on the chair situated along the aisle.

They were absorbed in conversation when 2 men from a nearby table passed behind the client. What happened next was related by another diner who saw everything but thought the 2 men were part of hubby’s party.

As both men passed behind the client, one of them used his foot and kicked the bag towards his companion who stooped to pick it up. They made sure that they positioned themselves so that hubby and lawyer, who were in their line of sight, would not see the bag being picked up. They then exited Pancake House in the opposite direction of the diner-witness. As soon as the diner saw them running off with the bag, he realized it was a robbery and alerted the group of hubby. By that time though, the robbers had escaped using a motorcycle parked at the corner street.

Professionally done, smooth, and quick. Too fast for people around to realize what was going on.

To their credit, Pancake House’s management assisted the client in making a formal report of the robbery. But this incident should once again awaken the Pasig police to the rampant robberies in their area. As a yogini who practices at the nearby Strata 100 bldg., I have already heard of several cases (including that of some of my own yogini mates) whose cars’ windshields have been smashed at a nearby GUARDED parking lot and had items stolen from inside. No wonder several patrol cars roam this area at night!!!

This is pretty scary because as a blogger, I lug my laptop around when necessary. The girls also have their laptops that they bring sometimes to school and to nearby cafes and restaurants. How do we protect these?

There are a few realizations I got from this incident:

1. It is harder to steal a laptop that is open, on a table, and plugged to an outlet. It is a lot easier to pick up a laptop inside a bag and just carry it away.

2. Laptop bags are better off placed in a conspicuous place like a table top rather than below on the floor. I used to think that placing it near my feet was safer but apparently it is not.

3. We must always be aware of our surroundings, observe people sitting close by and consider sitting in a place that could deter crime. Sitting close to the exit is not advisable as this makes theft too easy.

4. If we must leave our laptops to go to the comfort room, we should inform our companions to watch the laptop. Only in extreme situations should we ask the waiters/waitresses/cashiers in the restaurant to keep an eye on our things. They cannot be held responsible for these as their primary duties are to the restaurant. If you lose your laptop despite asking them to watch it, they can never be faulted for being negligent.

5. Investing in a laptop lock may be something to consider. Kensington notebook locks are pretty expensive but I hear there are very reasonably priced locks available at CDR King. I have to go check these out to see if these are reliable and get some for me and the kids.

Let’s learn from this new M.O. and find ways to protect our laptops whenever we are in a public area.


17 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. MommyBa
    Mar 11, 2009 @ 13:42:17

    pretty scary! magagaling na masyado ang mga magnanakaw ngayon. we all have to be careful. somehow, this made me feel glad that i don’t have a laptop with me for now.

    tama ka rin that we have to be wary about our surroundings. be vigilant.


  2. cookie
    Mar 11, 2009 @ 15:41:59

    scary!! my bil also lost a laptop and other stuff somewhere in pasig. he was parked at silver city and someone broke into his car. lesson here is always be alert and always take care of your things πŸ™‚


  3. imom
    Mar 11, 2009 @ 17:56:25

    Yikes! The two men must have been observing from a distance, planning and strategizing how to stealthily get that laptop. That’s how they are, kaya we must always be wary of our surroundings.
    Thanks for sharing this new MO and the tips. I also always lug mine around, haaay.


  4. Chona
    Mar 11, 2009 @ 23:13:10

    If any consolation at all, car insurance comes with laptop insurance nowadays, of course, for an additional premium BUT on the condition that the gadget is kept in the trunk when traveling. Otherwise, the company won’t cover its loss due to theft/robbery. Basta don’t leave the laptop inside the car where it can be easily spotted. A friend, caught in a bumper-to-bumper traffic in Paranaque with his laptop on the passenger seat, was held at gunpoint by three men. They just got his laptop (and walked away literally I think. Traffic e.)

    Jane: Wow, you can’t even work on laptop while in car nowadays! Scary!


  5. noemi Dado
    Mar 13, 2009 @ 10:17:16

    if ever i place it on the floor I tie the handle to my feet way under.

    Another blogger just lost his laptop, dslr and digi cam at MH Home Depot at the Fort

    Jane: Noemi, this is a big tragedy for that blogger. I wonder if we should consider covering our stuff with property insurance…


  6. Kay
    Mar 13, 2009 @ 17:58:50

    Wow! Thanks for the tip. This is appreciated. I’ll certainly tell people I know about this.


  7. Wenchie
    Mar 14, 2009 @ 16:35:49

    Oh my golly, I know the place. My sis and I used to hang out there when I’m in the Ortigas area. Grabe MO nila, I also got victimized by the salisi gang years ago (Aristocrat Resto). They took my bag which I placed on the chair beside me. I think they threw a P20 bill under our table, then a waiter pointed it to us. We all bend over to look. Hayun in a matter of few seconds, my bag’s gone. Ang galing at ang bilis nila kumilos. Sa van naman sila sumakay.


  8. liz
    Mar 14, 2009 @ 20:22:33

    omg! this is indeed worrying. three laptops were stolen last night from the trunk of a car parked outside The Podium. the loss is around P230,000- 250,000 worth of stuff.

    more about it here



  9. Trackback: Stolen Laptops, Car Robberies in Ortigas Center, The Fort | A Filipina Mom Blogger
  10. Ade
    Mar 15, 2009 @ 20:03:03

    My girlfriend’s dad works there. I better warn him.


  11. Trackback: Laptop & camera thefts are on the rise….. :( | Ajay's Writings on the Wall...
  12. Trackback: Crimes against the Pinoy techie: Stolen laptops, DSLRs, and other gadgets |
  13. csperez
    May 17, 2009 @ 11:04:10

    best to food delivered and meet inside private offices, pancake house in pearl drive does deliver, as several restaurants do around area

    had an experience in pancake house annapolis where security guard allowed a punk-colored
    gay to position in nearby chair near my handbag ,when i turned to face him he stood
    and left, i believe several security guards are not professional guards at all, these are
    fielded to guard establishments and establish loose alliances with inside personnel

    gloria maris dagupan -watch out for waiters and those pushing carts around , m.o. push bag with tray bearing siomai etc and while you are distracted someone else picks it up


  14. virna aberilla
    Mar 10, 2010 @ 14:54:24

    my original 2 days old LV bag was also stolen last night at aristocrat (malate) by this salisi gang. they were seated at a long table beside us. my bag was placed on the floor in the middle of me and my tita. our table was seated by the wall near the door entrance.

    their modus operandi was while we were eating our dinner (dad, me and my tita). a 4 yr old kid looked by our table. as in, she was really staring not only on our food but also on my 2 cellphones which i placed on top. napansin ko ung bata but my dad did not even care. so we continued eating our dinner until my tita went to the bathroom. i then looked down on the floor to pick up my bag but to my surprise.. it was gone. inside were my license, 2 atms, 1000 cash and of course my original LV bag.

    i learned that u should always always be mindful of your belongings..if there’s no space on where to put your bag, rather put it on your lap or on the table by the wall.

    @Virna – Wow, I can imagine how bad you must be feeling. I really hope something can be done about these crimes. They are getting too frequent already.

    sh*t talga yang gang na yan. 😦 that was my first orignal LV bag given by my tita for passing the nursing board exam!


  15. Gary Higgins-Smythwhiting Brown
    Jul 04, 2010 @ 13:30:21

    Wow. This is insane. These guys are brazen! I know this restaurant very well. The two doors are not exactly free of obstacles. It’s a tight restaurant – you have to maneuver between the tables.

    It’s quite easy to stop them, should one decide to shout out or whatever. I suspect they could be armed, too, so they can make a get-away if they hit a snag.

    Ortigas is relatively well-policed, too. I was once apprehended and asked what I was doing (well, ok, I was going for a stroll…. at 2 a.m.! but nothing came from that).

    So if the thieves are going inwards to areas like Ortigas…. Well, is there a safe place left in Manila????

    @Gary – Hello, thanks for dropping by my blog. It was pretty alarming for me to learn of this M.O. As to your question whether there are still safe places in Manila …I guess we just need to avoid places that are notorious, always be with companions, and be vigilant. The Aquino administration, hopefully, will address this matter as well.

    Mr. Higgins-Smythwhiting


  16. The Photoblogger
    Jul 04, 2010 @ 17:44:23

    this is scary 😦 I must remember to secure ALL my things, thanks for sharing this tita πŸ™‚

    @Photoblogger – You’re welcome! Stay safe…


  17. JMCK
    Aug 02, 2010 @ 10:22:49

    pinay in the us, geez wanted to come for a vacation but these stories really scare the heck out of me! have they caught the salisi gang??


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