Dutch bar tycoons death was suicide

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The family of the bar tycoon Sjoerd Kooistra, who was found dead on Monday, say they are devastated by the police news that it was suicide. On Tuesday, the family said they believed his death was a gangland killing.

Mr Kooistra was famous for his exploitative practices in the Dutch bar world. He owned 80 premises in 2003 mostly in Amsterdam and Groningen. In 2008, magazine said he was worth 130 million euros.

He was known for renting out his bars to entrepreneurs at exorbitant rates and would then milk the businesses until they went bankrupt. He set up complicated legal constructions to protect himself from prosecution.

Recently, he became embroiled in a legal battle with the Heineken brewery over a debt of at least 60 million euros. His lawyer and friend, Oscar Hammerstein, claims the beer giant treated his client “outrageously”.


© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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