Eight arrested in arms trade investigation of "wholesaler for criminals"
The police arrested eight people on Tuesday morning as part of a large investigation into illegal arms traders who allegedly distributed hundreds of weapons over the last four years, the Rotterdam police said on social media and in a press conference later in the day. There were 14 raids as part of the police operation, including two business properties and a dozen homes.
The raids and arrests were related to gangs who supply weapons used in sensational crimes, according to Rotterdam regional broadcaster Rijnmond. "We think we have rounded up this gang," said Petra Willemse of the Public Prosecution Service (OM). She reportedly referred to them as a "wholesaler for criminals."
The arrests include a 32-year-old from Capelle aan den IJssel, and four from Rotterdam. An informant in a criminal network led to the the investigation into the 32-year-old, who has been surveilled since September 2018, Rijnmond reported after a press conference held by the police and prosecution service.
All of those arrested are Dutch citizens between the ages of 22 and 42, according to Hart van Nederland.
Raids were conducted in The Hague, Capelle aan den IJssel and Zeist, among other places. Police showed off four high-powered firearms during the press conference. At least two weapons were seized on Tuesday along with 60 thousand euros in cash.