Venice fines ‘idiots’ who surfed the Grand Canal $1,500 a piece

Two young men who thought it might be fun to film themselves gliding down Venice’s Grand Canal on motorized boards have learned the hard way that fun comes at a price.

The men, who have so far only been identified as “foreign tourists”, launched a manhunt after Venice Mayor Luigi Brugnaro issued a manhunt prosecuting anyone accused of crossing the canal on an approved vessel brought, offered a free dinner. “Here are the two haughty jerks making fun of this town,” Brugnaro wrote on his social media with the video. “I’m asking everyone to help us identify and punish them, even if our guns are really dull – mayors desperately need more powers when it comes to public safety.”

The men were found Thursday morning, fined more than $1,500 each and their expensive toys confiscated. Banned for life from returning to the UNESCO World Heritage city, they face further charges, including some sort of defamation, for making the city look bad.

The surfing fiasco is the latest in a string of tourist scandals in Italy this summer, which have seen Americans fined for throwing an electric scooter down the Spanish Steps and a string of fines for people caught in record-breaking surfing Heat in fountains swam .

At one point on their well-documented journey, one of the surfers fell off his board, but had no trouble keeping his phone afloat when he got back up. Tourists could hear the duo cheering from the city’s scenic bridges as they crossed the canal.

A number of commentators on the mayoral posts noted that if even a fraction of the mayor’s attention given to these joy-riders could be diverted to other issues in the city — including efforts to control floods, corruption in some halls of the city government and over-tourism in general – the city could be better off.

The dinner reward for identifying the dumb duo – local media reported – will be at one of the city’s overpriced tourist restaurants in St. Mark’s Square. Venice fines ‘idiots’ who surfed the Grand Canal $1,500 a piece


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