Drug crime on the rise due to inconsistent policy, National Police chief says

Drug crime has become so big in the Netherlands partly because of inconsistent policy regarding the police, National Police Chief Erik Akerboom said in an interview with the Volkskrant.

"The up and down policy of successive cabinets means we cannot build a good position in the neighborhood. That you cannot build, stable long-term intelligence positions because you are always being asked to do something else", Akerboom said. As a result, the police lost sight of young criminals that start out as drug runners and grow into drug lords. 

"You cannot sustain and manage the rule of law without more constant financing of the rule of law", he said to the newspaper.

When he was appointed National Police chief three years ago, Akerboom had to lay off 3 thousand police officers. And now he has to hire a thousand new police officers, including for an anti-drug team, a "Dutch DEA". And that takes time. "You have to educate those people, train them, let them start relationships with the environment. Getting a thousand extra people in a year, that is impossible", Akerboom said. 

He called politicians "too fickle". "I would wish the Netherlands a cabinet that makes a statement about the financing of the rule of law over years. The cutbacks, the ad hoc policy - you can perhaps do that with a company, but not with the rule of law."