Police tallied a record high total of shoplifting incidents last quarter
In the first quarter of this year, the police registered a record number of shoplifting incidents. Almost 12,600 reports have been received, the highest number in at least eleven years, as determined by an ANP analysis of police figures.
Police have noted that the number of reports of shoplifting has risen significantly in recent months, but said "further investigation is needed" to discover the cause of this increase.
Since 2012, the police have been keeping digital statistics regarding public crime, including the number of shoplifting cases. This has shown a downward trend in recent years, with a particularly low number of thefts in the first year of the coronavirus pandemic. Back then, measures were implemented over a long period of time that required shops to restrict their opening hours.
However, especially in recent months, the number of reports has jumped at a record pace. In the first quarter of 2022, the police recorded around 9,300 shoplifting cases. In the same period this year, there were 36 percent more shoplifting cases. There has been an increase in all provinces, with a 69 percent jump in Groningen and a 60 percent rise in Noord-Holland.
The figures also show that the Groningen municipality of Westerwolde made the most reports relative to the size of its population. Almost all of these reports came from Ter Apel. In the past twelve months, Westerwolde had more than 100 thefts per 10,000 inhabitants.
Shoplifting is also common in the municipalities of Arnhem, Zutphen, Leeuwarden, Tiel, Roermond, and Groningen, with more than 50 thefts per 10,000 inhabitants.
Reporting by ANP