Expatica news

Dutch news in brief – 2 March

Court orders release of drug smugglers

The Haarlem Court has ruled that drug smugglers who have swallowed drugs may no longer be detained in the Netherlands. The court said the ruling was the result of a policy from the Public Prosecution (OM) to send drug smugglers back to their country of origin if they have swallowed less then 3kg of drugs. Drug smugglers who swallow drugs (bolletjesslikkers) usually carry less than 3kg of drugs and therefore cannot be prosecuted and thus should not be detained, the court ruled. The court previously followed the OM’s policy of detaining drug smugglers until they have passed the drugs through their system. The OM can negate the effect of the ruling by opting to summons the drug smugglers.

Queen to open new Dutch embassy in Berlin

Queen Beatrix arrived in Berlin on Tuesday for a two-day State visit to Germany and was scheduled to open the new Dutch embassy later in the afternoon. The Queen will also visit German Chancellor Gerard Schroeder on Wednesday and meet with several other politicians. She will also pay a visit to the Jewish Museum in the German capital.

1,700 arrests in crackdown on youth crime

Amsterdam authorities claim to be making good progress with the crackdown on hardcore criminal youth. In the past year, 1,722 repeat youth offenders have been arrested, 381 of whom were placed in youth institutes and 81 in rehabilitation projects. The arrests are the result of a project launched at the start of 2003. The operations involves deeper co-operation between the police, the council, the Council for the Protection of Children, rehabilitation services and youth social workers.

Balkenende to meet with British PM

Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende will meet with British Prime Minister Tony Blair on Friday. During a dinner the two leaders will discuss European affairs. In the lead-up to the Netherlands assuming the six-month rotating EU presidency mid-this year, Balkenende will meet with many leaders of current EU states and incoming members.

[Copyright Expatica News 2004]

Subject: Dutch news