Belgian Road Police Engaged In
A Cutting-edge Anti-drug Campaign
6 JAN - Belgian Road Police takes part in an anti-drug campaign based on new technology to intercept drug transports.
The focus of the campaign is on drug couriers and drug transporters. In order to be more efficient, the police are using a new system that allows them to control vehicles in a more targeted manner.
Control actions focus on drug distribution networks. To work in the most efficient way possible, the police are using a high-tech tool: a new system that analyzes data from roadside cameras (ANPR) and sends the teams on site a signal when a potentially suspicious vehicle is heading in their direction. These are often vehicles which have already been used for drug transport, or whose owner is known to have committed drug offenses.
Thanks to this new information-based system, the police can control vehicles more effectively and thus increase their chances of catching drug carriers. This action mobilizes both personnel from local police and different units of the Federal Police as in a recent action on the E17(A14) motorway near Marke in the vicinity of Kortrijk. On site there were three anti-drug dogs, a specialized team from the Federal Maritime Police and teams from the Federal Road Police to intercept cars and trucks and control occupants. Customs are also present with a truck equipped with a scanner that can detect goods in hidden spaces. Experience shows that drug distribution networks often use these spaces to hide drugs. More targeted drug transport controls through the information system also allow for more efficient use of police and customs resources.
In 2021, the integrated police campaigns intercepted not less than 99 vehicles with a hidden compartment or an average of two per week. In 2020, that figure stood at 35 vehicles. The police are increasingly aware of the problem and receive specific training coordinated by the Federal Judicial Police. Hiding stashes are often cleverly designed and can be found in spaces such as the center console or as a replaced passenger airbag.