Youth gangs continue to proliferate

Getting criminal gangs of youths off the streets is proving to be a thornier problem than justice minister Ivo Opstelten had expected, with dozens of new gangs being formed over the past two years.

Opstelten promised to do something about the youth gangs which carry out muggings, house break-ins and armed robberies, but now admits he cannot fulfil that promise, reports RTL News.

One problem is that although youth gangs are a priority for the minister, they are not high on the action list for the police. The police commit too little manpower to the problem, there is not enough evidence to convict gang members and the emphasis lies in social care rather than punishment, RTL reported.

According to the police, they have removed 45 of the 89 gangs that existed in 2010, says RTL. Of the rest, 19 are not involved in serious crime and 25 are criminal gangs. But in the meantime, however, 34 new gangs have been formed.


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