Dutch court scraps violin maestro Andre Rieu's child labour fine

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A Dutch court Monday scrapped a 116,000-euro fine slapped on celebrated violinist Andre Rieu for allegedly allowing children to perform past a late night limit set by law.

"The court finds the reasons for the fine unfounded," the Limburg District Court said, adding "there are too few indications that Rieu employed the children."

Rieu's lawyers in October said they were appealing the "absurdly high" fine after a group of young Romanian pan flute players were on stage until midnight during a series of concerts in 2015.

Rieu had invited the children, together with Romanian pan flute virtuoso Gheorghe Zamfir, to play in his hometown of Maastricht.

Dutch law states that minors cannot perform after 11:00 pm.

Rieu's lawyers said the children were on stage "for only a few minutes" to wave at the crowd at the end of the concert, which they said "was a standard practice" for Rieu.

Rieu also denied he was the children's employer as the group performed with Zamfir.

With his curly locks and bubbly rock star personality, Rieu is considered the world's best-known modern violinist having sold more than 40 million records.

He is particularly famous for his waltzes, opulent stage sets and costumes and has invited celebrities including Anthony Hopkins and David Hasselhoff to join him at his concerts.


© 2017 AFP

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