Amsterdam: Moroccans burglarizing each other

Amsterdam: Moroccans burglarizing each other

Moroccan residents of Amsterdam are increasingly breaking into each other's houses, for example to steal dowries.

According to Joke Padmos, spokesperson of the Slotervaart district, this is really a new trend.  "It's alarming how much the number of home burglaries is rising.  Part of it is due to shops being better secured, but it also has to do here with the phenomenon of Moroccans breaking into each other's houses.  They know, for example, that there was a wedding and go looking for the dowry."

According to Padmos, district mayor Marcouch has gotten letters from other parts of the country about this problem.  Meanwhile, she says that things are going very well in the neighborhood when it comes to muggings and breaking into cars.  "The number of muggings has been halved and breaking into cars has almost disappeared from the scene.  But those house burglaries are therefore a problem and we'll now deal with that."

1,400 families in Sloterparkwijk were provided with anti-burglary liquid, with lets them spray valuables with micro-dots of synthetic DNA.

If the police locates the stolen goods, the microdots, which can be seen with a microscope, show who's the rightful owner.

Padmos says that they'll make it extensively clear that the valuables in these houses are marked.  There would be stickers on the windows and signs in the neighborhood.  It then won't be attractive for thieves to break-in.  There would also be less people willing to buy the stuff.

Such projects in Rotterdam, Utrecht and Venray lead to an average decrease in break-ins of 50%.

The number of burglaries in Sloterparkwijk increased last year by 67%.  Padmos say that the anti-burgalry fluid is just the first step.  "We looking at how we can renovate these houses and want to improve local employment in the neighborhood.  People rarely have links with the neighborhood and each other.  There's poor social control.  We get way too few reports that there's a suspicious car in front of a house or that somebody or that someobdy is entering a house by ladder."

A ton of the fluid was needed for the 1,400 families.  That money was given by the district and by the Eigen Haard and Alliantie housing companies.

Source: De Telegraaf (Dutch)

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