There are at least 20 problematical areas in the city of Tirana regarding the crime of theft. Citizens should be aware particularly about burglary, car thefts and robbery. Which are the capital city’ hot spots, where the police is unable to set order?
Crime against property has shown a disturbing increasing trend in the last years, while the level of detection remains at critical low levels. In their periodical analysis reports, the law enforcement institutions, such as the police, prosecution and courts mention such increase of the theft rates as a real concern for the community. A concrete strategy should be developed for solving this issue and give an end to this situation. Despite the findings and evidences, very little is done to minimize this phenomenon. Investigim.al has obtained a confidential report of the State Police, which points out the most problematical areas showing an increasing trend of theft-related criminal activities in the capital city. The report analyzes the period between January and December 2013, and after an analysis of this type of events has been conducted, it highlights the “hottest” spots of theft crimes in Tirana District.
The former-Bllok area is considered as the hottest spot by the Police Station no. 2, due to the large influx of citizens’ gathering, particularly during weekends and holidays. The main criminal trends noticed in this area include, narcotic drugs’ sale (distributers and users of drugs often visit this area), theft of businesses or offices exercising their activity in this area, and the life or health threatening crimes due to in unpremeditated conflicts (for futile motives). A characteristic of this area is the fact that persons with criminal and police records that exercise their activity in this area, are not residents, but rather come from all over Tirana and even other cities, and hang around in the bars, coffee shops and casinos located in this area.
The area known as “Brryli” near the “Koço Gliozheni” maternity hospital has also shown an increasing trend of thefts and a high number of persons with criminal records hanging around. Different kinds of thefts have been observed in this area, mainly against businesses and cars. The police have organized several operations, which have resulted in the arrest of persons suspected for these thefts. Despite this fact, this is still a difficult area for the police with regard to the theft crimes, and it turns out to be in the Tirana Police’s black list.
The area near “Ismail Qemali” high school is known for a high rate of house burglary and car thefts, mainly in the evening hours, as reported by the police. For this reason, the citizens are advised to be careful especially during the night.
The area situated along the street between the Albanian Radio and Television Building and the Palace of Congresses, the Pyramid, the “Nënë Teresa” square and the stairs of the University of Tirana Corpus, the “7 xhuxhat” playground, the “Qamil Guranjaku” street behind the American Embassy, and the “Aksion Plus” Association’s building is said to be an area where drug users gather in order to be rehabilitated, just behind the foreign languages high school. This area is classified by the police as a problematic area regarding the theft phenomenon, because of a contingent of problematic persons that circulate in this area.
The “Medar Shtylla” street, otherwise known as the “Komuna e Parisit” area is another segment characterized by such dynamic events, particularly in the area known as the “Park”. In the last years, there has been an evident increase of thefts of houses and of other premises, like lottery and betting premises, where plasma TVs have been stolen , or thefts aiming at women purses, necklaces and mobile phones.
The area near “Selman Stërmasi” stadium is classified by the police as the most problematic area regarding the theft of parked cars’ mirrors and other accessories. Crimes considered as theft of personal items occur even in this area.
The area near the pools and the “Dinamo” complex is problematic especially during the summer time, with an increasing trend of personal items’ thefts and health-threatening crimes during unpremeditated conflicts.
The “Gjergj Fishta” boulevard and the new buildings’ area from the former exhibition building “Shqipëria sot” up to the Tirana District Court building, is characterized by an influx of theft activities. The criminal trends observed in this area are the personal items’ thefts, cars’ mirrors thefts and the “light” narcotic drugs’ trade.
The area of the former-final bus station of “Tirana e re” has been distinguished in the last years for the serious life-threatening crimes. Moreover, a number of armed robberies in casinos, bars and sport betting premises have taken place. Other criminal trends of this area include car thefts, car mirrors’ thefts, bar thefts, personal items’ thefts (purses, necklaces, mobile phones), as well as the trade of “light” narcotic drugs.
Recently, the criminal activity has shown an increasing rate in the area including the “Naim Frashëri” and “Frederik Shiroka” streets, the new buildings and the area near the “21 dhjetori” neighborhood. The main types of crimes are those against property, cars, bars and houses, and the personal items’ thefts.
The aviation field and the Durrësi Street is a problematic area regarding the theft against property. Thefts of bars are dominant in this area (plasma TVs), but this rate has decreased recently, as a result of the successful police operation through which a group of suspects were captured in the “aviation field” area. Even cars thefts have been a problem for the people living in this area.
The area of Laknas, Frutikulture, Bathore, Babrru, Valias, show an increasing contingent of law offenders, with ages varying between 14 and 26 years old. The persons conduct their criminal activity mostly in Tirana city, by stealing apartments, bars and restaurants, vehicles, hand bags, necklaces, mobile phones or lap tops. Most of these people have almost no education or have interrupted it at some point. Another concern and an increasing tendency has been the livestock theft, which despite the successful police operations in arresting a group of criminals back in 2013, still remains problematic.
The area known as Unaza e Re including the intersection of Unaza, Dogana, Mëzes and “3 Dëshmoret”, shows as the most problematic crimes the thefts of vehicles and bars or restaurants. The increase of the rate of thefts in this area has been the consequence of fast urbanization and influx of people with criminal tendencies that now live in this area.
The area near the highway, which includes “Rruga e Durrësit” with the direction from Dogana-Marikaj and the new Rinas highway, is mostly characterized by the crime of theft through tire puncturing.
The area known as Kalaja e Prezës, which is often visited by the residents of Kruja and Fushë-Kruja, but also by a large influx of people especially during the weekends, appears to be more problematic for the crime of petty theft.
The area known as “Misto Mame” and “Fusha Misto Mame”, which is located in both sides of the “Konferenca e Pezës” street, seems to be more problematic for the apartments and vehicles’ thefts, as well as theft of electric cables.
The Qendër-Kombinat area appears to be problematic for the number of conflicts happening there, due to the large number of bars located in the centre of this area, but also for the theft of apartments. It is also worth mentioning the large number of banks located in both sides of “Llazi Miho” street. The intersection between “Llambi Bonata” street and the street called “Qelqi”, is known as an area with a higher concentration of people with criminal records, if compared to other neighborhoods or municipalities. These people often cause serious incidents, such as armed robbery.
Minors involved in crime
The police describes the involvement of minors in the world of crime, or as they call it the “Baby Gangs”, as an increasing phenomenon, which is more distinct in “Allias” area and “Rruga e Dibrës”, where minors of the age 16 are pushed into these crimes by other older persons with more experience in the crime world, who play the role of their protectors. The police indicates that the authorship of most of the incidents happening in this area belong to a group of youngsters aged from 14 to 18 years old. These persons have been already identified by the police, but most of them cannot take criminal responsibility due to their young age, and this has negatively affected the prevention of crime. Also it is worth mentioning that, with the added efficiency of the new police structure, their performance has become more solid in the detection and prevention of crime. They exercise their role more convincingly now and better assist the citizens in need.
According to the former – capital city police’ leaders, problems have been identified quite well, based on the findings of the analysis of criminal information and data. According to Nazmi Shuli, former -chief of Police Station no. 1 in Tirana, it should be emphasized that the bigger problems are related to the control of the territory by the police. “A disturbing problem for a better territory control with the aim of maintain the order, and keeping under control especially those persons who have shown serious criminal tendencies is the installation of surveillance cameras for the online monitoring of main streets and crossroads in Tirana district”, Nazmi Shuli said. According to the chief of police, who was dismissed from this position, this measure would increase the level of alert against crimes and the level of crime prevention, taking into consideration the wide territory that police stations have to cover .For the time being, it is impossible for the police forced allocated in the field to ensure a high level of efficiency through an immediate response to fix the situation.
Beside the problems related to how these problematic areas are managed, the Tirana Police says that the suburb areas lack asphalted roads and lightening, especially in the rural remote villages and this is something that encourages the criminal activities. Moreover, multistory buildings in some communes, such as Farka, Dajti, Kashari and the lack of an addresses system remains a concern, since it puts the police forces into difficulty when assisting the police stations in these areas. The Directorate of Tirana District Police has seven subordinate police stations and the Traffic Police.
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