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Counterterrorism, struggle against crime & drug trafficking, international cooperation, main features of the Moroccan Security 2023 report


Morocco’s Directorate of National Security (DGSN) is celebrating the end of the year with statistics reflecting a drop in criminal cases recorded in 2023.

DGSN touted the intensified efforts in collaboration with all its units to fight against all forms of crimes, including drug trafficking, terrorism, and sexual assaults.

According to the figures presented in its annual report, DGSN recorded a 10% decrease in the overall crime rate. Police reported 738,748 criminal cases, resulting in the arrest and prosecution of 723,874 individuals for different crimes.

Violent crime indications witnessed a decline in different serious offenses, with a 25% decrease in murders, assaults, and deadly injuries.

The report notably highlights a 4% decrease in sexual assault crimes as well as 19% decrease in car theft crimes.

Also celebrated in the report are the intensified efforts of all stakeholders in national police, including research, and scientific, and technical police to reduce the indicators of shadow crimes or unreported crimes.


Drug trafficking

In this regard, the Moroccan security forces’ annual report also stressed the importance of enhanced collaboration between national police and Territorial Surveillance services (DGST) to tackle drug trafficking crimes.

Such joint efforts led to the recording and processing of 99,513 cases as well as the arrest of 130,212 individuals, including 305 foreigners for their alleged involvement in drug trafficking cases.

Within the drug trafficking operations, police seized 81 tons and 175 kilograms of cannabis, a 17% decrease compared to a year earlier.

Police also seized nearly two tons of cocaine as well as six kilograms and 880 grams of heroin.

Furthermore, security services confiscated shipments of psychotropic substances, which amounted to 1.2 million tablets, including those of ecstasy brands.

“In the realm of drug-related cases, the ongoing year witnessed the execution of a targeted plan to combat the manufacturing and distribution of the chemical drug known as ‘L’Poufa,’” DGSN reported.

This annual report comes as Morocco is reiterating its pledges to contribute to crack down on drug trafficking, including l’Poufa. The drug is one of the dangerous substances that have become relevant among young people.

Morocco’s security approach includes strengthening road surveillance to tackle drug trafficking, in addition to awareness-raising campaigns to educate the public about the dangers of drug use and addiction.

DGSN’s report renewed Morocco’s determination to fight against drug trafficking, stressing that its anti-Poufa plan involves special forces of DGST, research and intervention squads as well as all other decentralized units to tackle this substance trafficking and use.

“This collaborative effort led to drying up the sources of distribution for these synthetic drugs, resulting in the arrest of 575 individuals involved in their distribution and the confiscation of five kilograms and 175 grams of this illegal substance,” the DGSN report stressed.


Counterterrorism

DGSN also emphasized Morocco’s mechanism to tackle terror-related crimes.

In this regard, DGSN recalled referring 29 individuals to the relevant prosecutor’s office for their alleged involvement in terror crimes.

“This does not include terrorist cells dismantled by the Central Office for Judicial Investigations, including the terrorist cell involved in the murder of a police officer in the city of Rahma in Casablanca,” the report explained.

DGSN is part of the Moroccan security units that is thoroughly involved in contributing to Morocco’s counterterrorism approach.

Several converging reports have highlighted DGSN and other Moroccan security units’ mobilization as part of the country’s counterterrorism approach.

This past November, the Country Terrorism Report by the State Department said in November that counterterrorism tasks are part of DGS’s top priorities. The report stressed that DGSN security services are in charge of conducting border inspections at ports as well as airport entries, including the Mohammed V International Airport in Casablanca.


Cybercrimes raids

The DGSN annual report also emphasized the country’s key role in contributing to tackling the cybersecurity crisis, which increased by 6% with 5,969 cases recorded this year.

Extortionate content reached 4,070 criminal contents, and 842 international mandates were directed in these cases.

DGSN said that the number of individuals arrested and referred to justice for their involvement in similar crimes reached 874 individuals.

Crimes related to cybercrimes included cases of sexual extortion, DSGN said, adding that 508 such cases were recorded this year, representing an increase of approximately 18 %. The report indicated that 182 individuals involved in these criminal acts were arrested throughout this past year, while the number of their victims stood at 515, including 109 foreigners.


Irregular migration

Morocco’s security services also highlighted efforts made to tackle human trafficking and irregular migration.

DGSN arrested throughout this year around 28,863 irregular migrants, including 18,820 individuals of different foreign nationalities.

Additionally, 121 criminal networks were dismantled, and 594 organizers and mediators of migration were arrested, DGSN said. 

Police also confiscated 707 documents and forged identity documents related to irregular migration cases in addition to 215 boats, and 31 vessels used in organized irregular migration attempts.


Financial-economic crimes

Morocco’s police also listed its achievements in terms of tackling economic or financial crimes.

DGSN said that specialized units in Rabat, Casablanca, Fez, and Marrakech handled 529 cases related to bribery, abuse of power, embezzlement, misappropriation of funds, and extortion.

Such crimes rate increased by nearly 14% compared to 2022.

The number of suspects investigated in similar crimes reached 693, including 322 suspects involved in bribery and abuse of power 259 suspects in embezzlement and misappropriation of public funds cases, and 112 in extortion and misuse of authority cases.

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