MPs back tighter gun controls after shooting
29 October 2004
AMSTERDAM — Dutch MPs have demanded greater supervision of gun club members after it was revealed the man accused of shooting his estranged wife and her boyfriend dead before turning the weapon on himself in Laandgraaf on Thursday was a legal gun owner.
The 47-year-old man was a member of a shooting club in Kerkrade and had a permit for three guns. One of the guns is believed to have been used in the shooting, while the other two were found in the suspected killer’s home, police said.
The man, of Heerlen, is suspected of killing his 34-year-old estranged wife and her 33-year-old boyfriend, of Sittard, before committing suicide in the woman’s home. The motive for the killing is believed to be relationship problems.
The alleged shooter was the father of the woman’s 20-month-old daughter, who was found unhurt in one of the bedrooms after the shooting took place.
Neighbours said the woman was going through a divorce from her estranged husband and had moved back in with her parents in the Abdijhof area of Landgraaf, in the south of the Netherlands.
Her mother was reportedly in the house at the time of the shooting, but was not injured, while the dead woman’s father was not at home. The girl was put in the care of other family members shortly after she was found safe.
Meanwhile, a majority of MPs said police must be able to intervene in future if it appears “unstable” people are in possession of guns.
The Christian Democrat CDA, Liberal VVD, Labour PvdA and the populist LPF parties believe that in situations such as marital problems, the weapons of a permit holder should be confiscated.
The parties said it was dangerous that people who have weapons in their home are rarely inspected or assessed for their continued suitability.
CDA MP Sybrand Haersma Buma also said shooting clubs should take greater responsibility in confiscating guns and/or suspending gun permits if a club member is undergoing difficulties.
[Copyright Novum Nieuws 2004]
Subject: Dutch news