These criminals are targeting young women who have long hair with scissors, and before you know what's happening, your hair is gone.
A Maracaibo resident Egmari Villarreal (pictured above left) explains:
"You have to see it to believe it. We're not going to be able to have long hair anymore. As a woman, this is something traumatic. It's happening downtown, at the beach or at the mall, where you find a lot of young women. The thieves grab them by the hair, pull out some scissors and cut their hair. Then they sell it at beauty or hair salons."
Another resident Mariana Rodriguez told Globovision that she was walking through a popular mall when she saw two women coming toward her.
"I thought they were going to steal my cell phone, because I had it in my hand at the time, but they took out scissors," she said. "They did not give me a chance to think or to run or anything. And when I looked, I no longer had any hair. More than 8 inches gone.
Maracaibo Mayor Eveling de Rosales told reporters that police were stepping up security to stop the attackers.
"As part of our operation of citizen security, we are giving them a forceful response, posting men and women to keep watch and stop this from continuing to happen," she said.
Synthetic hair in the country costs anywhere from $40 to $160, depending on its quality. But natural hair can cost more than $500.