Monday 16 September 2019

Crime rate falls again but there is more civil service corruption

Amsterdam’s appeal court. Photo: Depositphotos.com

More cases involving corrupt civil servants and other law and order officials were uncovered last year, according to the public prosecution department’s 2018 annual report.

In total, officials investigated 33 cases of corruption involving civil servants, up one third on 2017. At the same time, 32 civil servants were caught leaking information to criminals, a rise from 23 in the previous year.

‘It can be lucrative for civil servants to look the other way when it comes to crime,’ the department’s chief Gerrit van der Burg told BNR radio. Fraud cases and the drugs trade are particularly vulnerable to outside interference, he said.

The report also showed the drop in reported crime continued last year – declining 6% when compared with 2017.

However, the decline did flatten in the second half of the year and the total number of armed robberies rose 4% on 2017. Traffic offences, such as drunk driving, and illegal weapons possession were also more common.

‘While it is too early to talk of a reverse trend, it is important to follow these developments closely,’ the report said.

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