Okay, so Amsterdam's decision to close some coffeeshops got all the attention from the mainstream media.
Meanwhile, on the same day, the city announced a major new initiative that should come as a relief to countless tourists.
"Amsterdam bindt strijd aan met dealers nepdope."
Or "Amsterdam joins the battle against dealers of fake drugs."
"The Central Burrough is tackling problems and criminality caused by the sale of fake drugs in the center of Amsterdam.
The problems caused by so-called 'fake-dope-dealers' in the Red Light District appears to be increasing, judging by signals from the police and inhabitants. The police department has ticketed almost 1,000 unique persons for trading in fake drugs."
"It's difficult to catch fake-dope-dealers. Unless they move to, for instance, robbery, they aren't actually committing any criminal act: their wares are not [Schedule 1] drugs; they are usually just baking soda or little peppermints. "
"Victims, often tourists, scarcely report it because they don't want to be brought into connection with drugs."
"During a conference on Nov. 7, all partners acknowledged the size and urgency of the problem."
Sunday, November 23, 2008