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Meld Misdaad Anoniem.

Persbericht - 08 maart 2024

Record number of anonymous reports regarding wanted persons and drug trafficking

In 2023, Report Crime Anonymously (Meld Misdaad Anoniem, M.) forwarded more than 20,000 reports to police and other investigative authorities; an increase of eight percent. Throughout the year, reporters were highly involved in the investigation process. A record number of almost 1,800 reports were made following announcements on investigative TV shows or in response to other investigative messages issued by police. In addition, annual statistics show an unprecedented number of reports regarding drug trafficking in public or from residences. As a result of these reports, at least 3,120 suspects were tracked down and 1,255 weapons confiscated.

Reporters were highly involved in criminal investigations. Last year, M. received 1,770 tip-offs regarding individuals wanted for serious crimes such as robberies, violent crimes, shootings or arson. Often, perpetrators are recognised after footage is shown on Opsporing Verzocht or on other, regional investigative programs, but police are also increasingly appealing to the public through online channels.  Marc Janssen: “Reporters play a crucial role in successfully solving these types of cases. These are crimes that have a major impact on victims and their environment. People are outraged, because it affects them personally. The perpetrators are often acquaintances from their neighbourhood or village, and in those cases anonymous reporting offers a solution.”

Partly thanks to anonymous tips following investigative TV-shows, police tracked down suspects in cases such as arson at a gas station in Tilburg, a brawl in a pub in Asten, a stabbing on the Leidsekade in Amsterdam and an assault on two boys following the Bevrijdingsfestival [Liberation Festival] in Assen. In addition, viewers recognised three suspects in a series of shoplifting incidents in Twente and anonymous reports played a role in identifying a juvenile suspect in a home robbery in The Hague. During this robbery, two elderly sisters were threatened with a gun and tied up with cable ties. 

Major increase in reports on drug trafficking
More than half of the 20,328 reports were drug-related. In total, M. received 11,819 tips regarding, among other things, the import of drugs through the sea ports, production of synthetic drugs, cannabis cultivation and drug trafficking in public or from residences. Analysis of annual statistics particularly shows a major increase in reports regarding street trading. The hotline received a record number of 4,580 reports on this topic in 2023, an increase of 34 percent. The number of reports regarding drug trafficking from residences was also higher than ever before (3,829 reports, 8%).

Thank you, reporters
The crucial role that reporters play in investigations is also evident from last year’s overall results. Feedback from police in 2023 shows that more than 3,210 suspects were tracked down, partly thanks to reports. Furthermore, a total of 664 fire arms and 590 stabbing and impact weapons were confiscated thanks to anonymous reports. 

Last year, reports to M. once again played a role in the conviction of perpetrators of serious crimes. For example, a 43-year-old man was sentenced to ten years in prison for large-scale importation and trafficking of hard drugs. An anonymous report led to a container with almost 650 kilos of cocaine in the sea port of Rotterdam. The Amsterdam court sentenced a man on appeal to a prison term of 5.5 years for smuggling cocaine in suitcases from Suriname and Curaçao to The Netherlands.

A 35-year-old man was sentenced to 24 months in prison for theft and handling of stolen cars, commercial vehicles and a boat. The majority of these vehicles were stolen in the vicinity of Zwolle, Kampen and Steenwijk. Two co-suspects were given prison sentences of fourteen and eight months respectively. Furthermore, the court in Den Bosch sentenced a man to four years in prison for human trafficking. Asylum seekers were guaranteed residential status in exchange for a substantial payment. A man from Almere was given a twenty-month prison sentence for possession and trafficking of illegal medicines.His shed was packed with heavy painkillers, including almost 600 litres of oxycodone, more than 500 ampules of morphine and thousands of painkiller tablets.