Street theft reports swell in Brussels as they fall in other regions
Thursday, 04 July 2019
Rue Neuve in Brussels.
The number of bike thefts or pickpocketing incidents reported last year in the Brussels-Capital Region is rising, at the same time as the reports made to police in both Flanders and Wallonia dip, according to police figures on Thursday.
Brussels police last year received 13,716 reports of pickpocketing, as opposed to 10,680 in 2017. Reports for pickpocketing have been variable throughout the years, according to the figures.
In 2014, the number of pickpocketing thefts reported in the capital was slightly higher than last year’s figures (13,790 reports) but fell sharply in comparison to the reports made in 2013 (17,092) or in 2018 (over 18,000).
Police in Wallonia recorded a slight decrease in the reports they received, which fell from 4,853 in 2017 to 4,758 last year.
Their Dutch-speaking counterparts also reported a dip, as they received only 7,775 in comparison to just over 8,000 in 2017.
The police figures also point to a constant uptick in the number of bicycle thefts in Brussels, which have been slightly but steadily rising since 2016, year in which 3,287 city cyclists reported their bikes stolen.
In 2017, that number went up to 3,547 and it reached 3,719 last year.
According to Bruzz, Brussels Mobility Minister Pascal Smet attributed the increase in bike theft reports to the growing number of cyclists in the capital.