Feb 02, 2023 at 9:03 PMUpdate: 5 hours ago
The Dutch in particular are responsible for the many explosions in Germany. This was also apparent on Thursday, when the German police announced that they had rounded up a largely Dutch explosive squatting gang. The police in the Netherlands also have “every reason” to get started with this. Because of the crime that goes with it, the German explosive raids are also our problem.
In the Netherlands it barely pays to blow up ATMs and that is why Dutch thieves are moving to Germany. There is still a lot of money to be made there. This became apparent again on Thursday, when the German police announced that they had arrested seven Dutch people for committing more than fifty explosive attacks. The proceeds: 5.2 million euros.
While Germany sees an increase in the number of explosive attacks, the Netherlands has seen an “enormous decrease”. For example, 68 ATMs were blown up in 2019, compared to 20 in 2021 and 15 last year. Not only are there now fewer explosive attacks, they also barely yield anything, says police spokesman Robbert Salome to NU.nl.
This is due to the security measures that the Netherlands has taken in recent years. For example, there is now a system in which the money is rendered unusable with glue. “Then you have one block of money from which you can no longer get a note,” says Salome.
German squatting causes unsafe situations in the Netherlands
“You can say: it is in Germany, so it is no longer our problem. But it is,” says Salome. These criminals take the German loot to the Netherlands, where they invest the money in drug trafficking, among other things.
“You also see that explosive raids are used as entry-level crimes. Criminals then grow with the captured money,” the police spokesperson explains. “The explosive attacks are not committed here, but in the longer term we will certainly suffer from it.”
In addition to crime, the explosive squatting gangs also pose a danger in the Netherlands. For example, the explosives – often home-made bombs based on flash powder from cobras (firecrackers) – are made, stored and driven around here. The fact that these explosives are extremely powerful can be seen from the blown away facades, facades and parts of ATMs that end up up to 100 to 200 meters away. “It’s really dangerous what they’re doing.”
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Countries work well together, but more is needed
That is why the Dutch police work closely with their German colleagues. “We conduct joint research,” says Salome. If the German police suspect that the perpetrators are Dutch, they will inform their Dutch colleagues. The Dutch explosive squatters can be recognized by, for example, the working method, the used cars and sometimes the clothing.
The police believe that a hard core of about five hundred Dutch men is responsible for a large part of the explosive attacks in the Netherlands and abroad. They do so in varying composition.
But arresting the thud-squatting gangs alone is not enough. “The annoying thing is that for every arrest we make, new explosive squatters report.” According to Salome, young people should first of all be prevented from taking the step towards crime.
In addition, a large part of the solution lies in better securing German ATMs as well. But that extra security is more difficult to get off the ground in Germany than in the Netherlands because of the large number of banks and ATMs, says Salome. The German police announced on Thursday that they will soon hold talks about better security.
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