Since May 2012, selling marijuana to non-Dutch buyers has been illegal in the south of the Netherlands. This measure came into law in an effort to prevent large numbers of foreigners, especially Germans, from crossing the border specifically to buy drugs.

Dutch buyers had to show a “weedpass” to prove they were legal residents of the Netherlands. They also had to join a nationwide registry to buy from coffee-shops, where soft drugs are sold legally in the Netherlands.  

But police say that the result of the ban has been an increase in drug-related crime, according to the Hamburg Abendblatt.

Dutch News reported that the mayors of Amsterdam, The Hague, Rotterdam and Utrecht, the nation’s four largest cities, were originally opposed to the weedpass, which is slated to go nationwide by January 2013. Buyers will no longer have to register, but will still have to prove they are legal residents of the Netherlands. The measures will be “phased in” to allow for local adjustment, says the Dutch News.