About 400 MIT specialists to join the fight against subversive crime
In the coming years, the approach to organised subversive crime will be further strengthened with a team of approximately 400 additional specialists as part of the new Multidisciplinary Intervention Team (MIT). Thanks to investments by the government, the MIT can become a team operating both nationally and internationally with a focus on exposing and thwarting criminal structures and their illegal revenue models that threaten to corrupt our society. The Surveillance and Security Regime will also be further reinforced. Preventive measures will be taken in various neighbourhoods to prevent young people from being drawn into criminal activities. In addition, projects will be set up and measures investigated for improving the process of identifying and seizing criminal assets.
This was communicated by Minister of Justice and Security Ferdinand Grapperhaus in the letter sent today to the House of Representatives containing a further elaboration of the broad offensive against organised subversive crime.
“Recent shocking incidents involving excessive violence have revealed the utterly ruthless nature of organised subversive crime and shown that it is all about financial gain at the expense of everything we hold dear. This undermining of our democratic constitutional state is absolutely unacceptable. There is a long road ahead, but we can stop this by combining the efforts of all institutions - from police to education. Our aim is to round-up, seize and prevent.”
says Minister Grapperhaus.
In April this year, the initial efforts to set up the MIT were undertaken by the police, Public Prosecution Service, Fiscal Intelligence and Investigation Service (FIOD), Tax and Customs Administration, Royal Netherlands Marechaussee (KMar) and Ministry of Defence. In the coming years, the MIT is expected to grow into a data-driven team of 400 specialists in the field of intelligence operations and digital, international and financial supervision, enforcement and investigation. The primary focus of the MIT lies on exposing and permanently disrupting criminal networks and their operational processes. The team and its partners will carry out their task by breaking down the positions of power held by key figures, confiscating criminal assets, and creating barriers against criminal acts and the acquisition of black money. This involves international operations targeted at the source, transit and destination countries of the illegal drug trade and at logistics hubs such as ports and airports.
The MIT’s activities will supplement the activities of, and be carried out in cooperation with, the existing services engaged in tackling subversive crime. The team will also cooperate with private partners, such as banks and logistics companies, to expose vulnerabilities in legal economic structures and jointly set up barriers against the misuse of these structures by criminals.
Surveillance and Security
Local administrators, judges, public prosecutors, lawyers, agents and journalists - all of whom work in the service of law and order - must be able to practice their profession safely and without fear. Key witnesses should also be able to perform their role under safe and secure conditions. Protection of these persons is, according to Minister Grapperhaus, a basic condition for the functioning of the democratic constitutional state and therefore of essential importance in the fight against organised subversive crime.
The Surveillance and Security Regime will be reinforced across the board with additional capacity and resources for the police, Public Prosecution Service, KMar and National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism (NCTV). For example, a total of 80 FTEs will be hired to ensure a better exchange of information and advice, so that security measures can be taken in a timely and appropriate manner in the event of a threat, risk or the possibility of violence, and so that these measures can be scaled up or down in time. To implement this, the police will be reinforced with 120 FTEs for setting up specially trained Surveillance and Security Teams in all regional police units. These so-called ‘flex teams’ will allow the police to better enforce the security measures. Moreover, investments will be made in police services to enable 24-hour camera surveillance, in the surveillance of persons by the KMar as well as in other innovative measures, including less visible security measures.
The MIT is expected to make an important contribution in obstructing criminal business processes and their revenue models. New instruments for gaining a better insight into criminal assets are also in the pipeline. For example, in cases where there is an opportunity for seizure, the ‘Assets File’ will soon provide an up-to-date view at all times of the assets owned by a suspect, so that which assets can be seized and how becomes more clear. A project is also being developed to obtain a current view of the assets involved in large pending confiscation orders. This implies a reinforcement of the Central Fine Collection Agency (CJIB) in order to effectively track down hard-to-find assets, which can subsequently be confiscated. Work is also underway on the system of prejudgment seizure, with which assets under investigation can be immediately seized if there is also a pending confiscation order.
The possibilities of introducing ‘guardianship under criminal law’ are being investigated. With this measure, when imposing a confiscation order, the judge can also limit the convicted person’s power of disposal over his or her assets. Through the imposition of a supervisory regime, a (partially) uncollected claim under a confiscation order can be collected immediately if a convicted person starts rebuilding his or her assets. Furthermore, the Public Prosecution Service and the Central Government Real Estate Agency are looking into opportunities to socially repurpose seized real estate. The efforts to tackle subversive crime will become more visible to citizens once the seized real estate is repurposed such that it improves the quality of life in their neighbourhood.
In 2020, a sum of 15 million euros will be set aside for encouraging a preventive approach in the broad offensive against organised subversive crime. As part of this effort, projects will be launched in eight municipalities - Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, Utrecht, Tilburg, Eindhoven, Arnhem and Zaanstad – where vulnerable young people are at risk of slipping into the criminal circuit.
For 2021 and 2022, 15 and 10 million euros will, respectively, be made available for further reinforcing the local and regional approach further. Together with Minister for Legal Protection Sander Dekker, Minister Grapperhaus is working in collaboration with the departments of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, the Ministry of the Interior and Kingdom Relations, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment and the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport, as well as with the Association of Netherlands Municipalities (VNG) and the Subversive Crime Taskforce (Aanjaagteam Ondermijning) to remove breeding grounds for subversive crime by tackling social problems in cities and neighbourhoods. Minister Grapperhaus is also working with State Secretary for Health, Welfare and Sport Paul Blokhuis in combating the normalisation of drug use.