The four biggest Dutch banks – Rabobank, ING, ABN Amro and Volksbank (formerly SNS) – have lent coffeeshop owners some € 1.1bn using 170 coffee shops as security. The figures come from a research project carried out by the Financieele Dagblad and investigative website Investico which looked at connections between Dutch firms, entrepreneurs and the public sector, and the cannabis industry. The research shows that brewers such as Heineken and AB InBev have lent money to people active in the sector while 46 of the country’s 570 coffee shops are located in property run by a housing cooperation. Earlier research suggests around 25% of coffee shops have links to organised crime.

Source June 28:

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