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Year: House All Representatives House Clerk. Special Events. All Committees Search Committees Search. Search Search the Legislature Search. Print Page. Prev ious Next. Confirm Password. Next, a lack of intellectual capabilities and a troublesome school career can be risk factors. Dutch research shows that the level of education of parents and children does indeed correlate, albeit rather weakly Traag and Siermann Finally, intergenerational effects in dropping out of school are observed, but are difficult to isolate from other factors, such as poverty.
The core family is important for the transfer of values and attitudes and, not surprisingly, researchers of intergenerational transmission have particularly focused on risk factors at the family level. To begin with, parents with criminal records might be less skilful or motivated in imposing rules on their children, or in teaching them societal values to which they do not want to adhere themselves Farrington A related explanation is that parents actively teach their children criminal skills or at least show behaviour the younger generation will imitate.
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Criminal brothers and sisters may also be important in this respect Rowe and Farrington Next, assortative mating is considered as a risk factor Farrington Persons generally choose partners whose ideas and behaviour are similar, and individuals with a history of deviance may thus prefer spouses who do not categorically reject delinquent behaviour. However, these assumptions have been generally difficult to assess empirically. In the Netherlands, children who grow up in a broken home are convicted twice as much as children who grow up with two parents, although the effect is largely unrelated to whether the father has a criminal record van de Rakt et al.
There is also support for intergenerational transmission of poverty. However, this still leaves a relatively large group living in a persistent situation of financial deprivation, which is in itself an important risk factor for criminal behaviour see also Besemer et al. It may lead to labelling and increased police attention Farrington Empirical studies suggest that such an effect indeed occurs West and Farrington ; Besemer ; Besemer et al. Risk factors related to the broader social environment resemble family level factors, and we will therefore mention these only briefly.
To begin with, membership of closed subcultures in which norms and values differ from mainstream society is considered a risk factor, particularly if members persist through the generations in seeking their partners see above and friends in these subcultures. Such groups may also have a negative reputation and this may result in social exclusion and labelling. Van Dijk et al. The authors concluded that the risk of intergenerational transmission in these families was high. One important finding was the risk of traumatisation of mothers and children, on the one hand because of domestic violence and on the other because of confrontations with violent attacks on the father.
No less than six of twenty-five fathers had been murdered. Another was the observation of both assortative mating for females and assortative friendships for males.
Partners and friends often had built criminal records prior to the relationship, and sons of professional criminals were often friends of each other. Finally, the premise that poverty might explain intergenerational transmission did mostly not apply to the children. Except for those whose fathers had been murdered, which confronted the families with loss of illegal income, most children had grown up in luxurious material conditions. As explained above we selected 7 criminal families who have lived in the south of the Netherlands for at least three generations.
The latter choice allowed to gather data from archives, but excluded immigrant families who moved to the Netherlands from the s onward. Two families have lived in rural villages and three families in one of the larger cities in North Brabant ,—, inhabitants. A further two families reside in medium-sized towns 75, inhabitants.
Although the Netherlands has small communities of Roma and Sinti, most travellers are of ethnic Dutch descent and only the latter were selected for this study. Our empirical findings are based on two main sources. To begin with, we conducted extensive research of archives. Specific rules apply to privacy-sensitive information. Logically, information relevant to our object of study is not stored in a single archive. We searched court archives, archives of local police forces, archives of municipal and regional administrative bodies, and welfare and social security agencies, archives of religious institutions and the archive of the probation service.
The main provincial archive is the Brabant Historical Information Centre, but several municipalities maintain local archives. The second part of our empirical research focused on the period from onwards. For this, we studied the files of criminal investigation cases aimed at one or more family members.
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Next, we interviewed current and former police officers, and staff of other investigative services 14 ; probation officers 4 ; welfare workers 3 ; who all had been in contact with the families selected, and experts on the history of the province of North Brabant 4 to acquire a more general perspective. Criminal records were retrieved from the police criminal records database. This contains information dating back to approximately Earlier convictions were collected from the archives. Finally, we searched the media through LexisNexis, which nowadays archives Dutch newspaper publications as far back as the s.
Over the years, several family members have appeared in media interviews. We chose not to approach family members themselves. This choice was mainly a practical one, because access to confidential police information is allowed only under the condition that researchers do not attempt to contact any subjects involved, but safety considerations were also important.
Logically, much attention had to be given to anonymising findings to the extent that individual families could not be identified. Outcomes show high percentages of males with criminal records, across four generations. Apart from generation 1, the percentage of female family members with criminal records is also remarkably high. When compared to the outcomes of general studies of intergenerational transmission of delinquent behaviour, these families show much higher percentages. Women in particular have run-ins with the judicial system more often than is usually the case. If we look at organised crime, however, a pilot study amongst professional criminals in Amsterdam produced similar results van Dijk et al.
Most members of generation 1 grew up between the s and the s, when North Brabant was still a poor and agricultural region, which is reflected in the type of crimes that were committed. These were predominantly property crimes theft, fencing of stolen goods and violent crimes, including domestic violence. In two cases, the males of generation 1 were convicted only once. Finally, one person was convicted for property crimes but also for illegal alcohol production and trafficking, together with two of his sons. The only female in generation 1 with a criminal record committed a substantial number of property crimes as well as domestic and other violent crimes.
The second generation grew up from the s through the early s. All males with criminal records committed violent crimes, sometimes even manslaughter and murder. Several cases concerned threat and extortion.
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Most were also convicted for property crimes, which in some cases had been committed on a large scale. New types of crime also emerged, which partly reflected the economic development of North Brabant, such as traffic offences. Levels of seriousness increased, reflected in crimes such as trade in illegal firearms, counterfeiting and large-scale money laundering. Although the families were relatively late in exploiting the opportunities of the drug trade and production, they also became involved in this from the s onwards.
Most crime entrepreneurs of generation 2 largely disappeared from the police radar in the mids until they were arrested at the end of the s and early s for drug-related crimes. The women of generation 2 were convicted for property crimes and violent crimes. Most of them were sentenced only once, but several others very frequently.
Generation 3 mostly reached adulthood in the s and early s. Here, the focus shifts more towards drug-related crimes, both for men and women. It must be noted that female involvement in this type of crime mainly concerns two families with a relatively large number of daughters. In one of these families, half of the women were convicted more than once for drug-related crimes.
Most family members stop committing minor and major property crimes after the early part of their criminal careers.
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In generation 3, cannabis cultivation developed into a major source of illegal income, whereas in generation 2, drug trafficking cannabis, hashish and cocaine as well as synthetic drug production had been more prominent. In just two out of seven families, no sons or daughters had been convicted for drug crimes.
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Finally, although the number of adult children in generation 4 is still relatively small, they seem to continue with types of crime similar to those committed by generation 3. Convictions most commonly concern theft, violence and drug production and trafficking.
This applies to males as well as females. The above findings show that criminal families indeed exist. Here the picture is less clear.