In 2016, Meld Misdaad Anoniem (Report on Crime Anonymously) saw a strong increase in the number of tips regarding burglaries (+26%), hold ups (+25%) and violence (+11%). These types of crimes cause a great deal of outrage due to their significant impact on victims’ lives. These crimes could happen to anyone and this encourages the community to share information regarding the perpetrators through M. As per previous years, the total number of tips increased again last year: M. passed on 16,900 tips (+3%) to Police and other investigative bodies. As a result of these tips, 1,671 suspects have been arrested to date and 1,135 crimes have been solved or prevented from happening.
For years, tackling of so-called High Impact Crimes has had priority for Police and the Department of Justice. The increasing number of M.tips contributes to this. Mr. Titus Visser, managing director of Meld Misdaad Anoniem, explains why these tips are of such signifiance: “These offences have an enormous impact on victims and their surroundings. Not just financially, but especially also emotionally. Whether we’re dealing with a burglar breaking into your home while you are asleep or a robber entering your shop- it often has a horrible impact on victims’ lives. Perpetrators do not shun the use of violence. These types of crimes have an impact on the sense of security and safety in the community, it is very close to home and could happen to you too. Thanks to tippers, perpetators can be caught and more victims prevented.”
The number of tips with regards to hold ups increased by 25% from 358 to 449. Thanks to tips through M., the perpetrators of a violent hold up in a home in Utrecht were exposed. They came into the victims’ home in January 2016 and threatened them with a weapon. Two men have been convicted to prison terms of four and five years respectively. The judge blamed the perpetrators especially for completely ignoring the consequences of their actions to the victims.
Following anonymous tips of viewers of investigative television shows, Police tracked down the perpetrators of a violent hold up of a book store in Rijswijk and a hold up of a bus driver in Tilburg. The latter was committed by a 16-year old boy who also admitted to being responsible for a hold up of a takeaway store. In October, thanks to M.tips, Police arrested four men for their involvement in an armed hold up of a coffeeshop in Wolvega. Staff there had been threatened with a Kalasjnikov.
M. received 264 tips on burglaries, this number has never before been this high. In March, following M. tips, Police arrested two men from Soest and Eemnes for a burglary in Den Bosch. The perpetrators took a rare Fiat 500 and an iMac computer with precious baby photos. In Waddinxveen and Boskoop anonymous tips contributed to the solving of a number of burglaries. In December, eight men between 18 and 21 years were arrested on suspicion of committing several criminal acts, including these burglaries. According to Police they were members of a youth gang.
There was also a significantly larger number of reports regarding violent crimes in 2016. For example, last year M. received 301 tips (+13%) on murder and manslaughter, 144 tips (+8%) on muggings, and 132 tips on public violence (+23%). These tips lead to positive results. In April, two men from Roosendaal and Bovenkarspel were convicted for being an accessory to the murder of a 49-year old woman in Andijk. She was killed violently in her home in April 2014. Police tracked down the perpetrators thanks to a tip through M.
Due to anonymous tips, a 22-year old man was arrested for an armed mugging in The Hague. Threatening a 16-year old boy with a large knife, the perpetrator forced his victim to hand over his valuables. Furthermore Police arrested three men from Lelystad after receiving M. tips. They had beaten up three boys in Hengelo (Overijssel) who as a result had to be admitted to hospital.
Recently, M. has started a campaign to encourage reporting on perpetrators of violent crimes such as hold ups and burglaries. The campaign is aimed at young females. A survey showed that girls between 14 and 22 years often know those involved in these types of crimes and the majority of the respondents (70%) claimed it was important to report on this. The campaign therefore responds to the dilemmas which young females face when reporting and makes them aware of the consequences of crime. More information on this campaign can be found on overvallen.meldmisdaadanoniem.nl.
Solved cases by province can be found on www.meldmisdaadanoniem.nl/category/nieuws