Hundreds of Roma children are being used by family members as pickpockets, burglars or even sex slaves in the Netherlands, various experts and aid workers said to Nieuwsuur. The police responded that 400 detectives work on hundreds of human trafficking cases per year, including the exploitation of Roma children. Police officers will get extra training this year on recognizing the signs of human trafficking.
The aid workers and experts told Nieuwsuur that the Dutch government and authorities do not provide adequate protection for these Roma children. If such a child is arrested by the police, he or she is often returned to a family member which only exploits the child again. An internal National Police and Public Prosecution report, in the hands of Nieuwsuur, confirms this image. “There is insufficient knowledge and awareness among the police and judiciary that crimes committed by minors can involve human trafficking”, that report reads, according to the broadcaster.