Asylum authority worker Rene van Berlo playing football at an Oisterwijk refugee facility (photo: COA) - Credit: Asylum authority worker Rene van Berlo playing football at an Oisterwijk refugee facility (photo: COA)
Friday, 11 December 2015 - 14:15
Asylum influx has not caused crime increase, Dutch police reveal
While the arrival of so many asylum seekers in the Netherlands puts pressure on the police's capacity and resources, the idea that they cause a substantial increase in crime is "absolutely incorrect", according to deputy police chief Ruud Bik. From September 1st the police identified and registered a total of 21,230 refugees. About half of them come from Syria, the rest are from, among others, Iraq, Eritrea and Afghanistan. Three quarters are male and most are between the ages of 18 and 50 years old. Over the past three months refugees committed "limited number of mostly minor offenses", according to a statement on the police website. "We act against every offense, keeping in mind that these people have been through a traumatic experience. The wide spread image that refugees cause more crime is in any case absolutely incorrect", Bik said. "Our community police officers in the areas of refugee centers saw their work area expand considerably very quickly. Their good contacts with refugees make them able to often nip incidents in the bud. The number of incidents in and around reception centers remain relatively low."