Mayor Ties Elzenga of Veenendaal has advised his residents to avoid certain areas in the town due to a series of violent muggings. Although he says the ethnic background of the perpetrators is not yet clear, he has already made contact with the Moroccan community.

At least three violent robberies took place last weekend along a bicycle route from the centre to the south of Veenendaal, a small town near Utrecht. The victims were stripped and assaulted. Police are speaking of a new form of violence. "A combination of robbery and brutal humiliation," said a spokesman.

Mayor Elzenga has advised all residents to avoid the cycle route along which the offences occurred. "Do not go there if you are alone, and especially not in the dark."

Read the complete original version of this item...