Police turn to crooks to help fight crime

Police in northern Zealand will ask criminals to fill out surveys, hoping to glean information on techniques and motives

The article is written with Syrian refugees, among others, in mind (photo: iStock)
February 22nd, 2012 11:24 am| by admin
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Police are hoping to reduce crime in northern Zealand by having criminals fill out questionnaires.

The local police commissioner in Frederikssund, Finn Bernth Andersen, told  local newspaper Frederiksborg Amts Avis that the questionnaire aims to better understand burglars’ typical targets, motives, techniques and how they dispose of stolen goods.

The survey will be filled out by burglars who are currently serving their sentences, as well as former burglars familiar to police.

"We want to know how they decide on one specific house over its neighbour,” Andersen said, adding that the survey will be voluntary and anonymous.

From 2010 to 2011, Frederikssund alone has seen an 16 percent increase in the number of home break-ins.

The project will last for a few months and police are unsure how successful the project will be, given the likelihood that criminals may not be willing to provide honest answers to the survey. Still, Andersen stressed that the alternative crime-fighting method was worth a try.

“We will do anything we can to lower the number of burglaries," he said.

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