Trailer park raided as crackdown continues

26th October 2004, Comments 0 comments

26 October 2004 , AMSTERDAM — In an ongoing battle against tax dodging, social welfare cheats and illegal cannabis crops, police and city council workers raided a trailer park in Rotterdam on Tuesday morning to end suspected "inequality before the law".

26 October 2004

AMSTERDAM — In an ongoing battle against tax dodging, social welfare cheats and illegal cannabis crops, police and city council workers raided a trailer park in Rotterdam on Tuesday morning to end suspected "inequality before the law".

A team of police officers, accompanied by tax and local government officials, entered the park at about 7am. In all about 80 people were involved in the raid.

Members of a mobile police unit were also called in and anyone wanting to leave the park was searched by police.

Police — who were involved in the raid to ensure the safety of council staff — dismantled two cannabis crops and arrested a suspected thief. A police spokesman could not confirm if council staff had found evidence of tax or social welfare fraud.

Tuesday's operation was the second raid at the camp — located on the Cortenbachsingel in the Rotterdam suburb Beverwaard — this year. The previous operation, on 13 April, resulted in the arrest of 30 people.

Police dismantled 34 cannabis crops in houses across from the park and in the trailer park camp itself. Four firearms, two knives, a canister of tear gas, cash and a car were also seized in that raid.

The Dutch government is in the midst of an operation aimed at ending a tax "amnesty" enjoyed for many years by residents of trailer parks and shady businesses. Several trailer park raids have already been carried out this year, often accompanied by discoveries of illegal cannabis crops.

The secret tax "amnesty" agreements were set up to relieve tax officers of the hassle and danger of collecting full payments from anti-social people and groups, such as trailer park residents, marijuana cafes (coffeeshops), illegal casinos and brothels, groups of gypsies and the Hells Angels motorcycle gang.

Investigations have revealed that most people pay taxes properly, but some individuals and businesses are paying little or no BTW (valued added tax), property tax, water and sewage charges or are illegally collecting social welfare.

[Copyright Expatica News 2004]

Subject: Dutch news

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