State faces damages claim in child-porn scandal

23rd September 2005, Comments 0 comments

23 September 2005, AMSTERDAM — Brazilian victims of two Dutch child porn merchants are seeking compensation and an apology from the Netherlands for allowing the men to avoid jail.

23 September 2005

AMSTERDAM — Brazilian victims of two Dutch child porn merchants are seeking compensation and an apology from the Netherlands for allowing the men to avoid jail.

The Dutchmen from the naval city of Den Helder were sentenced to eight and 12 years by a court in Brazil in December 2003 for making 9,000 nude photos of underage girls.

The defendants were granted bail pending the outcome of an appeal on condition they surrender their passports. The Dutch consulate in Rio de Janeiro promised the men would not leave the country before the case was finalised.

But when it became clear they would have to serve the sentences, the men obtained emergency passports from the Dutch consulate and fled back to the Netherlands.

Twenty four of the men's victims, backed by Brazilian human rights group Trama, launched legal action in the capital Brasilia on Thursday.

Trama said the victims, girls aged 12 to 18 at the time of the abuse, had not cooperated with a painful criminal prosecution process only to see it come to nothing.

It is not clear how long the process with take and the victims have left it to the court to decide how much damages, if any, should be awarded, the Dutch branch of the Defence For Children organisation said.

The Netherlands can not prosecute the men in relation to this case as they have already been tried in Brazil. It is unclear if the defendants can be forced to serve out their sentences in the Netherlands.

The Public Prosecutor asked a court in the Dutch city of Alkmaar earlier this year to send the two men to jail for four years for their involvement in another case - circulating child porn in Russia. The court ordered additional evidence in relation to the ages of the victims in this case.

The Ministry of Justice has declined to comment about the men until the Alkmaar case is finalised.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2005]

Subject: Dutch news + Brazilian news + international child porn

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