First hearing in Endstra murder case
27 March 2007 AMSTERDAM – Three men suspected of involvement in the violent killing of real estate magnate Willem Endstra will appear in the high-security courtroom in Amsterdam-Osdorp today.
27 March 2007
AMSTERDAM – Three men suspected of involvement in the violent killing of real estate magnate Willem Endstra will appear in the high-security courtroom in Amsterdam-Osdorp today.
Endstra was shot dead on 17 May 2004 after leaving his office on the Apollolaan in Amsterdam.
The three are not notorious criminals, and have been shut off from all contact with the outside world since their arrest in December. The investigation is ongoing.
The public prosecution department asked the court to ban public and media access to the trial so that as little information as possible about the investigation reaches the streets. The court rejected this request however.
Willem Endstra is, as victim, the focal point in the trial against Willem Holleeder and a number of fellow suspects due to start 2 April.
The real estate magnate was reportedly blackmailed by Holleeder for years and forced to pay him millions. Endstra talked to the Criminal Intelligence Unit of the Amsterdam police about these practices on several occasions before his death. These detailed statements are the basis of the investigation into the criminal dealings of Holleeder, also responsible for the kidnapping of Alfred Heineken in 1983.
Police and justice officials are still investigating Holleeder's involvement in Endstra's killing. Endstra himself – publicly described by criminal John Mieremet, who has also since been killed, as "the banker of the underworld" – said on several occasions that he feared Holleeder would have him killed. Holleeder's possible involvement in other killings of criminals is also still being investigated.
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2007]
Subject: Dutch news