Houtman paid Holleeder EUR 1m - claim

26th April 2006, Comments 0 comments

26 April 2006, AMSTERDAM — Murdered property dealer Kees Houtman made large payments to alleged extortionist Willem Holleeder, according to witness statements seen by newspaper 'AD'.

26 April 2006

AMSTERDAM — Murdered property dealer Kees Houtman made large payments to alleged extortionist Willem Holleeder, according to witness statements seen by newspaper 'AD'.

"Ultimately he (Houtman) paid EUR 1 million, but they wanted more. The extortion continued. Houtman saw his end coming. Shortly before his death he said he would kill Holleeder. Perhaps he was killed himself because of that," one anonymous witness told the police.

The newspaper quoted on Wednesday from the statements made by two unnamed people against Holleeder, who has been in custody since January. Prosecutors suspect Holleeder, one of the men convicted of kidnapping Freddy Heineken in 1983, of extorting money from several property dealers, including Houtman and Willem Endstra.

Houtman was shot dead in Amsterdam on 2 November 2005, the day that Amsterdam criminal John Mieremet was gunned down in Thailand.

Mieremet and Houtman, 45, were part of the Kinkerbuurtbende (Kinker District Gang) with Sam Klepper and George van Kleef in the 1980s. Klepper was murdered in October 2000 and Van Kleef was shot dead eight days after Houtman and Mieremet were killed.

Another of Houtman's associates, Anthonie van der Bijl, 50, was shot dead in Amsterdam West on 20 April 2006. Endstra was murdered near his office on the Appollolaan in Amsterdam in May 2004.

The statements cited by AD claim Houtman and other property dealers were pressured to pay millions to Holleeder because they refused to join him in property deals. Holleeder's accomplices allegedly sought out Houtman and warned him his house would be blown up unless he cooperated.

Prosecutors have withheld the names of the witnesses and they are described only as A and C in the file against Holleeder.

It emerged earlier this week that a third person scheduled to make allegations against Holleeder will not appear before an examining magistrate. This led to speculation that the anonymous witness would have been Van der Bijl.

Van der Bijl was released from custody in early April after police found a large haul of cannabis in a warehouse. He was killed two weeks later.  

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2006]

Subject: Dutch news

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