May 26, 2024

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The tourist who vandalized the Colosseum said he didn’t know it was old

The tourist who angered a nation when he was captured scratching a love letter in the Colosseum has apologized, claiming — with embarrassment — that he didn’t understand the history of the Roman monument.

Ivan Danilov Dimitrov, 27, wrote in a letter to the city prosecutor and the mayor that he was aware of the seriousness of his actions and apologized to the people of Italy and the world at large for causing damage in UNESCO World Heritage location.

A man carves a love note at the Colosseum in the latest case of tourist misconduct

In Italian, he wrote in his letter, which was translated by The Washington Post: “In damaging the Colosseum, you have acted absurdly, cynically, and brutally, to the detriment of other visitors.” “I have no excuses.”

Dimitrov wrote that he would take responsibility for his actions and acknowledged the “invaluable artistic and historical significance” of the site.

He wrote, “I am most embarrassed to admit that it was only after this unfortunate incident that I began to appreciate how ancient this monument was.”

A tourist scribbled his girlfriend’s name on the walls of the Colosseum in Rome on June 23, as shown in a video that went viral, angering Italy’s culture minister. (Video: Reuters)

Dimitrov’s lawyer, Alexandru Maria Tyrrelli, said in a letter that he had already reached a bargain request that would keep his client out of jail. He said the prosecutor has not agreed to any jail time, though the petition is still being negotiated.

Prosecutors and representatives of Italy’s national police, the Carabinieri, could not be reached Thursday afternoon. Associated Press mentioned Last week, the authorities used photographs to identify the man as a visitor living in Britain.

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Dimitrov’s face appeared in a video that went viral in late June, in which he used a corkscrew to write “Ivan + Hayley 23” on a wall. The American visitor who filmed the video, Ryan Lutz, he told NBC News He was “surprised” and reported the incident to security.

“I’m going to settle for this guy just to learn a lesson,” Lutz told the news outlet. “You do not respect the host countries.”

In Rome, the law targets bad behavior for tourists such as bathing in fountains

Italian officials expressed their outrage online, with Culture Minister Gennaro Sangioliano Twitter that the act was “a sign of great indecency” and Tourism Minister Daniela Santanche say Twitter expressed hope that the tourist would face penalties.

Italian news agency ANSA mentioned The tort penalties could include up to five years in prison and a fine of more than $16,000.