Dutch police say they have detained 19 people, most of them members of the Bandidos motorcycle gang, in coordinated raids that spread into neighboring Belgium and Germany.

The cross-border operation early Wednesday involved riot police, specialist arrest squads and a police helicopter. They targeted 30 locations in the southern provinces of Limburg and Brabant. Searches of the properties were expected to last throughout the day.

Police and prosecutors say in statements that members of motorcycle gangs are "heavily involved in criminal ... activity in the areas of weapons, drugs and intimidation."

Dutch Justice Minister Ard van der Steur visited Limburg province on Monday to discuss a recent rise in violence blamed on rival motorcycle gangs in the province.