The Confusion of Police Genres: Administrative vs Judicial – Impacts on Security and Law Enforcement

2023-12-19 17:24:00

A confusion of genres between administrative and judicial police

Concretely, the mayor is the head of the administrative police “but when individuals start to vandalize cars, set fire to street furniture, it is the judicial police which must take control through instructions given by the judicial director”, explains our interlocutor. “Now the problem has become so politicized that the police officers responsible no longer have a say. Every year, we have to let young people attack police stations, pharmacies, businesses and the police cannot move despite the fact that we have the means to intervene.”

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He notably takes the example, last year, of a Molenbeek police station stormed by 200 young people. “We had received information in advance that these young people were planning to attack a police station. There were 300 police officers mobilized inside but we received orders from the mayor not to intervene. They threw stones at the police station, tried to get inside, and we had to barricade ourselves. The administrative police have therefore taken precedence over the judicial police because the police do not dare to go against the mayor even though the law provides that we should have intervened to avoid the ransacking,” he criticizes.

It remains to be seen whether the situation will be reviewed this year to avoid any excess, but on the high-ranking side, there is fear that the situation will degenerate again. “I don’t see why the situation would change especially since we are a few months before the elections. Politicians are keen to avoid any risk of confrontation between the police and young people who systematically cause problems during end-of-year celebrations,” he concludes. “For her part, the Minister of the Interior Annelies Verlinden assured that she advocated “zero tolerance” in the event of aggression, in particular by increasing the penalties for violence against police officers and rescue workers. But in practice, we do not I don’t believe.”

It should be noted that this year, police escorts are planned from five barracks to accompany firefighters to the scene of intervention in order to avoid any risk of attacks against firefighters.

We tried to contact the office of Mayor Catherine Moureaux to get a reaction, in vain.

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