Once upon a time Moroccan, always at the bottom? Searching for “pearl opportunities” from the past

Ibrahim: a thief, a healer, and a successful businessman

The four M formula, Pretty Girl, Crime and Money, certainly applies in Abraham’s case.

I got to know Ibrahim (1962) as a professional criminal in the making. He was smart and daring, also in a criminal sense. Criminals describe such a person as “wise.” His friends predicted a golden future for him.


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Ibrahim descends from a Moroccan family of ten children.

After primary school he went to secondary school, but was expelled from school already in the second grade. Then he went to lts individual level school. During his school days, he was involved in all kinds of criminal attacks. His first arrest, when he was 15, was in connection with a stolen bicycle. Many robberies and arrests followed. At a young age, Ibrahim was sentenced to a disciplinary school sentence and a supervision order (OTS).

He told his guardian that he did not need any special help.

His LTS teacher at the time described Ibrahim as “a verbally good-looking kid with smooth conversation, always looking good and knowing about the chaos in the neighborhood.” The four M formula – pretty girl, crime and money – certainly applied in Abraham’s case. His then-Dutch Surinamese girlfriend was, according to the teacher, an “amazing girl,” Abraham dressed in first-choice clothes from the robbery. Ibrahim called her Hafiza, but this was not her real first name. Hafiza was a former student of my wife, then she taught at lhno, the former local science school.

Three children were born from Ibrahim’s relationship with Hafizah. I remember that during the maternity visit, price tags were still attached to children’s clothing. Officially, Hafida and Ibrahim did not live together; Technically it was better. A few years later, their relationship reached its climax. In a conversation I had with him in 2010, he said of this: “Hans, a family is like a house. If the columns are not right, the house will fall apart. That’s how things went with my family.”

Hafida, his ex-partner, has not yet reported a sexual assault. According to a report by the Child Protection Council, Ibrahim also used “job violence” in his children’s education. Thus, he carried the lighter under his eldest daughter’s thumb to teach her the habit of thumb sucking. The next time the little girl saw her father, she responded with fright and immediately started crying.

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big fight

Ibrahim came from the ranks of the group from T-Bandji, but soon went his own way. This was preceded by a conflict with Najib. It must have been in 1985. Najib came to Ibrahim with the proposal, with Zwarte Jesse, to squat in a shed in West Amsterdam. Ibrahim presented his car, which was parked nearby. The raid went perfectly and the stolen TVs, stereos and other items were temporarily stored in Najib’s house, as his parents were on vacation at the time. The next day Abraham came and demanded a third of the proceeds in a loud voice. This was not as agreed. Ibrahim was kicked out of the house with a CD player and some money. It turned into a big fight. Since then, Ibrahim did not want any relationship with Najib and his friends. He looked at them contemptuously.

In 1987, Ibrahim was also active for a while as a “Jenner” in the professional team of the gambling game “Ball by Ball”, which at that time was very popular in various street markets in Amsterdam. Ibrahim deserved it well. He said to me:

“I was a boy who had never been arrested. I never went past a police station, and I never had a blitz, a center punch, or a claw in my pocket.”

As a criminal act of weapons, Ibrahim has been subjected to numerous burglaries mentioned in his name. For example, he committed a major burglary in a video and computer store on the Rivierenbuurt in Amsterdam. He spent many hours, ostensibly as a potential customer, monitoring the place, so he would know exactly how security was set up. For example, he knew how to operate the fence that served to protect the windows in such a way that he and his fellow thieves could move with complete ease. Warning his older brother that he was hanging out with the wrong friends, he ignored the words: “I am as strong as a horse. I have iron balls.”

In the neighbourhood, Ibrahim and his brothers were known as “Daltons”, who would incite young boys to steal valuables.

Ibrahim’s dream was to have his own café. Thanks to the financial support of his family, he was able to realize this dream. The cafe was named Odysseus. In order not to endanger his illegal life, the cafe was registered in the name of a family member. This was a well-known trick in the area, which was also frequently applied to motorbikes and cars. After all, if illegal facts are discovered, the building cannot be nailed and transportation cannot be seized. At the end of the eighties, the turnover of the coffee shop averaged 180,000 guilders per year.

The whole family lived on it.

Officially, a café is allowed to have 500 grams of stock.

The crack was perfect and the stolen TVs, stereo equipment and other equipment were temporarily stored in Najib’s home where her parents were on vacation.

That was inconvenient in a booming business with several clients, like Ibrahim. The stock must then be replenished every two days. Therefore, a large stock of hemp was kept with his parents. They got compensated for it. The customers of the cafe are mainly young people who buy cannabis. Addicts were only tolerated insofar as they stole goods and checks. Illegal Moroccans and Algerians were banned. The café served as the permitted ‘front’ for Ibrahim’s illegal activities. Treating stolen goods was the real profitable trade. In order not to discredit the cafe, illegal acts, such as buying stolen goods, were carried out outside the door. Ibrahim was always careful to see only merchandise, a set of clothes or cigarettes, and never touch them. In 1988, he said, “You always have to keep yourself clean, so I make the thief put the stolen things in the trunk of my car.” He sold things at great profit to shops and market merchants. Additionally, Abraham was smart enough to mix a stolen set of clothes with legal goods and would rather put the items elsewhere.

As the owner of the café, Ibrahim employed a number of unauthorized workers both boys and girls with benefits. At the same time, he sponsored two indoor football teams in the area. He also hired an accountant and paid the statutory and tolerant income tax.

light drug trade

In 1990 Ibrahim left for Spain. He was tired of it for a while. He handed over the coffee shop business to his younger brother. As a therapist, I suspect that the heat has gotten so intense under his feet, while his relationship with Hafida has broken down. He lived in Spain for six years, on the coast in Marbella. They were running a tapas shop there with a friend, which served as a cover for the soft drug trade. Abraham is deliberately a little vague about this.

His interest in Holland persisted during this period, thanks in part to a hoax. Ibrahim went to a psychiatrist and declared that he was mentally ill. He was given medicine, but he threw it away. Thus, he obtained the coveted medical certificate and was not obligated to apply.

Ibrahim carried a lighter torch under his eldest daughter’s thumb to rip her thumb. The next time the baby saw her father, she responded with fear and immediately started crying

He was free to come and go as he pleased.

Whenever he received a call for an interview, he returned from Spain specifically for that. “I’ve been enjoying this trick for six years,” he told me in the late ’90s.

Once back in Holland, in 1996, Ibrahim went back to the old thread again, but that didn’t end well. He was arrested and tried for robbery on a money runner.

He got a relatively light sentence. He was described in prison as being kind and true, as long as he was doing well and there was no one to stand against.

A few years ago, in 2017, the café run by his brother was closed down by order of the mayor.

The official reason was that the café would be too close to some schools. The real reason was that things happened that could not stand the light of day. Even the lawyer delegate could do nothing more, so that a very profitable source of income for the family disappeared. As far as I know, Abraham has never taken drugs himself. He finally broke up with Hafida, his ex-partner. Everything was ready. The children were in boarding school until they were eighteen years old. Ibrahim even helped his ex-partner financially when she was allocated an apartment in Amsterdam-North after their divorce.

However, the amount I “borrowed” for her – it would be 12,000 euros – was not spent on upholstery and furniture. According to Ibrahim, she had put silicone in her breasts with money. Then his ex-wife worked the piece as an oriental dancer and of course her breasts were a little full. Hafiza then moved from Amsterdam-Noord to a new house near Hoorn. Later I visited there, with the announcement of the birth of their two children still in my jacket. Hafiza found work in a fashion store in Horn.

Diploma for sale?

In 2009, when I called Ibrahim again, he would only see his children now and then. His eldest daughter didn’t even want to do anything with him; A lot of bad things have happened in the past. Children now live independently and work in the hospitality industry. Ibrahim himself has been living in Rivierenbuurt with a Dutch friend for six years. Together they had a son, and a second child on the way. Officially, Ibrahim is now unemployed. Wants to start a coffee shop as an owner. He needs the paperwork required for this, which is why Ibrahim is pursuing an apprenticeship course at ROC-ASA, Department of Care and Welfare. There in a group of students with a “psychic backpack”.

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Ibrahim must laugh contemptuously. “I have more life experience than all the students and teachers combined.” He calls the training “playground”. “You learn nothing,” he says. “You start at ten, we talk a little, then a half-hour break, after which two more pages of the book are discussed.” Although training is nothing, he says, the issue of social hygiene is a stumbling block for him. But he certainly needs this degree. Ibrahim finds it difficult to study. He is active and cannot sit still. “I can’t read a book, I’m tired after one page.” asks me:

“The diploma is not for sale?”

Curious about the rest of the article? Read it in the latest jigsaw or watch it on Blendle.


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