Monday, June 15, 2015 - 15:30
Dutch authorities investigated nearly 100 for terrorism
Last year the Public Prosecutor did 54 investigations into radicalization and terrorism aimed at approximately 90 suspects. "Dozens of Dutch people were prepared to travel to the ISIS proclaimed 'caliphate' in Iraq and Syria." This is according to the Public Prosecutor's annual report, which was released on Monday. According to the report, the willingness of radicalized Dutch people to join the caliphate "represents a direct threat to the citizens of those countries, but also for the Dutch soldiers who were present in these areas. And there is a substantial risk of an attack by radicalized people in the Netherlands." Last year was a extraordinary year for the Public Prosecutor. The downing of flight MH17 on July 17th led to the start of the largest investigation in Dutch history. In addition to the investigations into radicalization and terrorism, the prosecutor also tackled a total of 1,130 criminal organizations across the country. That is an increase of 113 percent compared to the 531 criminal organizations tackled in 2009. These organizations were mainly involved in trafficking synthetic drugs and money laundering. The number of muggins, burglaries and robberies showed a decrease of roughly 20 percent in all three categories. A record amount of 136 million euros in criminal assets were confiscated in 2014. This is almost twice as much as the goal of 70 million euros. According to the Public Prosecutor, this is partly due to incidental matters, such as the settlement with SBM Offshore. The Prosecutor is concerned about the "alarming" amount of organized crime in the southern parts of the Netherlands. These crimes particularly take the form of organized cannabis cultivation and the manufacture of synthetic drugs. The police and the Public Prosecutor have freed up extra capacity in order to give more priority to "tackling the debilitating drug crime" in the area.