Hells Angels murder trial starts
31 January 2005, AMSTERDAM — The trial of 15 Hells Angels charged with the murder of three clubmates starts in the high-security Amsterdam-Osdorp courthouse on Monday.
31 January 2005
AMSTERDAM — The trial of 15 Hells Angels charged with the murder of three clubmates starts in the high-security Amsterdam-Osdorp courthouse on Monday.
The bodies of three members of the Hells Angels chapter the Nomads — including the club president — were found in a stream near the southern Dutch town of Echt in February 2004. The three bodies were riddled with bullets.
The victims are suspected to have been murdered in the clubhouse after they allegedly stole 300kg of cocaine from a Colombian drugs gang. The public prosecutor claims the Nomads gang members jointly resolved to kill the three men.
The trial is being hindered because most of the suspects have refused to give statements to police. Authorities are unsure who fired the fatal shots and have therefore charged all 15 members of the club with the murder.
Police found traces of blood from the three victims during a search at the Nomads' clubhouse in Oirsbeek in the south of the country. It is alleged the suspects tried to cover up the murders by re-plastering walls, removing the floor and repainting the ceiling.
The public prosecutor is relying on forensic evidence, such as blood and DNA traces, to prove its case. There is also a Hells Angels witness, who is in fear of his life, news service NOS reported.
Two other suspects have been charged with the murder of a 19-year-old man, whose body was found in May 2003. His body had been sliced up into several pieces, news website nu.nl said.
Never before have so many Hells Angels gone on trial for such serious offences in the Netherlands. The trial in Amsterdam South is expected to take at least two weeks and possibly up to a month.
[Copyright Expatica News 2005]
Subject: Dutch news