Home Dutch News Dutch news in brief – 30 January

Dutch news in brief – 30 January

Published on 30/01/2004

Gas blast man gets five years

A man accused of deliberately causing a gas explosion in Rotterdam last year has been sentenced to five years in jail. Rotterdam Court ruled that there was sufficient evidence to convict 22-year-old Martin G. of setting off the blast that injured three people on the Schiedamseweg on 27 July 2003. His girlfriend was freed by the court. At the time of the explosion, the pair faced eviction because they had not paid the rent on their home for eight months. Some 53 homes were damaged in the blast.

Volkert hits out over second murder allegation

Volkert van der Graaf — the animal rights activist who killed politician Pim Fortuyn in May 2002 — has lodged a complaint with the Journalism Council (Raad van de Journalistiek) against television current affairs programme Twee Vandaag. His lawyer said that the programme had tried to create the impression last year that Van der Graaf had murdered environmental inspector Chris van der Werken, who was found shot dead in his car in 1996. Van der Graaf was questioned at the time and the case was reopened after he shot Fortuyn, but evidence of his involvement in the 1996 case was not uncovered.

Nine held after stop-and-search in Tilburg

Nine people were arrested when police mounted a stop-and-search operation in Tilburg. Two knifes, tear gas, a baseball bat, a baton and small amounts of hard and soft drugs were also seized in the Thursday night operation, news agency Novum reported. Under legislation entitled preventief fouilleren, police can stop and search everyone in a district that has been designated by the local mayor as a risk area.

Two bodies pulled from the water

Post mortems were carried out Friday on two bodies found in dumped in water in Amsterdam. A pedestrian spotted a body, believed to be that of a man, lying in the Oosterringdijk near the Amsterdam Science Park in Watergraafsmeer at midday on Thursday. Police suggest he was murdered. In an unrelated incident, an unidentified man was pulled from the Singelgracht at Mauritskade later on Thursday. Foul play is not suspected in that case, local television AT5 said.

52 arrested in email fraud investigation

Police officers have arrested 52 people in Amsterdam as part of the investigation into email fraud. Amsterdam has become one of the global hubs for the so-called “Nigerian” or 419 scam in which unsolicited emails are sent to people offering them vast profits in return for their help in a dubious business scheme. The police searched 23 homes on Thursday, mostly in the southeast of Amsterdam. One suspect tried to escape by jumping from a third floor balcony. He was taken to hospital.

CDA opposes doctor visit fee

MPs of the ruling Christian Democrat CDA have signalled their opposition to Cabinet plans to make people covered by the public heath insurance ziekenfonds package to pay a portion of the cost of visiting their doctor. Opposition parties the Socialist Party (SP), Labour PvdA, green-left GroenLinks and small religious party ChristenUnie (CU) are also opposed to the plan. But in a bid to reduce the budget deficit, the cabinet hopes to discourage unnecessary doctors’ visits by making patients bear some of the cost.

[Copyright Expatica News 2004]

Subject: Dutch news