The police arrested 18 pickpockets around the Queer & Pride Amsterdam event this past weekend and recovered dozens of stolen phones. “Although the first edition of Queer & Pride was smooth and festive, pickpockets, unfortunately, struck often,” the police said.
Pickpockets particularly targeted iPhones this year. The police found dozens of iPhones on suspects, including a bunch wrapped in tinfoil and hidden in a hotel room. “These mobile phones have been seized, and the police hope to reunite them with their actual owner soon.”
The police urged victims whose phones and other items got stolen at Queer & Pride Amsterdam to report it. “The declaration serves as proof that you are the rightful owner of the property. This way, the police can return the phone to you.” Reports are also essential for the investigation against the suspects.
Last week, Rene Middag of the National Police told the Telegraaf that “mobile gangs” of pickpockets target large events in the Netherlands and elsewhere in Europe. “They are well-organized criminal groups with accomplices outside at a festival, for example. When they’ve stolen a few dozen phones or wallets, they are thrown over the fence in a bag and brought to ‘safety.’ Or they use lockers that are available at every major event to temporarily store their loot.”
In the first half of this year, the police received 6,500 reports from victims of pickpockets, nearly 40 percent more than in the same period of 2022. In the first half of last year, many events were still banned in the Netherlands due to coronavirus restrictions that still applied in the first quarter.
https://nltimes.nl/2023/08/07/18-pickpockets-arrested-queer-pride-amsterdam-weekend 18 pickpockets arrested at Queer & Pride Amsterdam this weekend