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No prison for deadly stabbing

Published on 25/06/2007

25 June 2007

BRUSSELS – The court in Ghent has sentenced 43-year-old Dirk D.P. to a suspended five-year prison term. The farmer from Nazareth stabbed his neighbour Eddy N. with a steak knife in the summer of 2005 when a wife swap between the two men and their wives went wrong. Dirk D.P. had filed a protest against his conviction in absentia but the court upheld the sentence.

Dirk D.P. and Eddy N. had mutually consensual relationships with each others’ wives for some time. The couples visited the amusement park Bellewaerde on 19 June 2005, the day of the incident. During a barbecue that evening Dirk D.P. lost control. “He saw that his wife and neighbour were having a very good time,” the public prosecutor said.

“When he tried to intervene, he was rejected by his wife and humiliated by the victim. The defendant then stabbed Eddy N. in the neck with a steak knife. “The knife hit the carotid artery. The victim died on the scene as a result despite attempts to resuscitate him.

The public prosecution department had charged the man with provoked manslaughter and advised he be sentenced to five years in prison. The crime had indeed been provoked, the court found. The judges did not think effective prison time was necessary. The court referred to the tension created by the wife swap and the fact that the victim had made fun of Dirk D.P. at the barbecue.

Dirk D.P. was also imposed a suspended fine of EUR 550. He will have to pay five relatives of the victim about EUR 50,000 in emotional damages.

[Copyright Expatica News 2007]

Subject: Belgian news