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New pilot programme to recover stolen vehicles

A new pilot programme to help recover stolen vehicles will soon be launched in the Netherlands, as recently announced by the Dutch government. The programme is based on an accelerated reporting system, since many stolen vehicles are taken out of the country within a few hours.

Under the programme, the license plate numbers of stolen vehicles will be registered as stolen both nationally and internationally within two hours of the theft being reported. Currently, it takes an average of 5 days for the theft of a vehicle to be registered in the vehicle registration system and the Schengen Information System (SIS).

This process will be expedited as a result of closer cooperation between insurers, the police and the Government Road Transport Agency (RDW).

Once a vehicle is reported as stolen, the insurance company will immediately generate an electronic report which is then sent to the National Vehicle Crime Information Centre (LIV). The LIV will then file a corresponding report in the police registration system.

Faster registration should increase the probability of catching car thieves as well as ensure that the police receive accurate information about how a vehicle has been stolen.

It will also shorten the period over which the owner of the stolen vehicle can still be held liable to one day or less. Moreover, the owner of a stolen vehicle will no longer have to visit the police station to submit a report.

Each year, approximately 30.000 vehicles are stolen in the Netherlands, leading to insurance claims costing 205 million euros. Only about one third of stolen vehicles is recovered. The authorities predict that the new system would help recover 10 additional stolen vehicles per week nationwide.

The pilot programme starts on February 1 in the Brabant Oost police district and will last for six months. If it is deemed a success, the new approach will be introduced nationwide.

Carly

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Carly Blair

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