Yesterday, an Australian tourist here in Medellin, Colombia asked me how do you say thief in Spanish. My initial reaction was to tell him “ladrón.” But then I thought about it . . .
How To Say Mugger In Spanish
How To Say Burglar In Spanish
Ayer un ladrón entró a la tienda y se llevó ropa, dinero y perfumes. (Yesterday a burglar entered the store and took clothes, money and perfume.)
How To Say Cat Burglar In Spanish
El ladrón escalador trepó por el desagüe y entró a la casa por una ventana abierta en el tercer piso. (The burglar scaled the drainpipe and entered the home through an open window on the third floor.)
But if you are talking about the type of thief who deprives someone of their property by means of swindling such as a con man, con artist or scammer, the Spanish word that you should use is “estafador.”
Los estafadores son ladrones que, en lugar de asaltar, engañan a la gente para quitarle dinero o cosas. (Con artists are thieves who, instead of mugging, deceive people in order to take away their money or things.)
How To Say Pickpocket In Spanish
Un carterista me robó el dinero. Él sacó mi cartera del bolsillo sin que me diera cuenta. (A pickpocket stole my money. He took my wallet from my pocket so that I didn’t notice.)
Notice that the Spanish word “carterista” is both masculine and feminine.
But in Colombia, the word used for “carterista” or pickpocket is “raponero.” and in Colombia the verb for “to pickpocket” is “raponear.” In Colombia, a different word (raponero) is used for pickpocket because a wallet is not called a “cartera” in Colombia but a “billetera.”
How To Say Petty Crook In Spanish
El policía atrapó a un ratero en la estación de metro.
The police captured a petty crook in the subway station.