Baboons turn carjackers in South Africa, U.K.

Baboons are a protected species in South Africa, but some drivers are looking for protection from canny primates who have developed a knack for breaking into cars.

Cape Town hosts hundreds of roving baboons who wait by the roadside, climb into car windows and open unlocked doors.

The Johannesburg Times reports that, on a trip to Cape Town, British tourist George Cox of Dorset, U.K. was recently carjacked by a baboon who opened his car’s rear door, sat down beside his sister and began rifling through her handbag.

“I couldn’t believe he’d actually opened the door and then closed it behind him so quietly,” Cox told the Times. “It was surreal.”

Officials at England’s Knowsley Safari Park in Merseyside have likewise warned tourists to avoid the baboon section of the park if their cars are fitted with roof storage boxes.

Photograph by: Knowsley Safari Park, handout