The Special Assistance (TBB) team of Customs will have access to a semi-automatic “long” weapon. The TBB is Customs’ arrest team that takes action if there are drug seizures in the ports, or if there is a suspicion that armed criminals are active at a location where Customs personnel are deployed.
The team is available 24/7 in collaboration with the HARC team, with employees from Customs, Seaport Police, Public Prosecution Service and FIOD. The TBB counts and weighs drug seizures and takes samples. They then supervise the destruction of the drugs. The TBB can also arrest smugglers.
According to Customs, ‘cross-border drug crime has intensified’. The TBB therefore receives additional training.
An advantage of a larger firearm is the increased firepower, so bullets can only be stopped by heavy bulletproof material. In addition, shooting can be more accurate.
But it is unclear whether the TBB members will indeed receive a weapon with heavier ammunition. It has not been announced what type of semi-automatic weapon they will be equipped with.
The Royal Military Police often patrols Schiphol with the Heckler and Koch MP5. Police arrest teams also use the MP5. Submachine gun MP5 is relatively small, and therefore effective when deployed in smaller spaces. Automatic and semi-automatic versions of the MP5 are available.
An MP5 holds the same ammunition as a pistol, but the magazine is twice as large (30 bullets). An MP5 can shoot more accurately, but in terms of firepower it is no match for an assault rifle like an AK-47 or an AR-15.