Police action probably killed Mitch Henriquez, prosecutor says

Police action probably killed Mitch Henriquez, prosecutor says

Aruban holidaymaker Mitch Henriquez, who died in police custody at the weekend, was probably killed by a lack of oxygen and this was most likely caused by the police, the public prosecution department said on Wednesday afternoon. The Hague’s prosecution chief, Kitty Nooy, said in a statement ‘no other explanations have been found for the lack of oxygen’. ‘No natural causes of death were found’ and Henriquez had not been using drugs and was not drunk, Nooy said. Mitch Henriquez died in hospital a day after being thrown to the ground and bundled, apparently unconscious, into a police van after an open air concert by UB40. He had reportedly been shouting that he had a weapon. [banner] The public prosecution department initially claimed Henriquez became unwell in the back of the police vehicle but retracted that statement when the videos showing him slumped on the ground and being dragged to the police van were placed online. Police officers The five police officers involved in the arrest have been suspended and are official suspects in Henriquez’ death, police chief Paul van Musscher told a news conference. The news had come as a tremendous shock to the police, Van Musscher said. He said he assumed the police intervention had been made with the best of intentions but that ‘something went really wrong’. Shocking Mayor Jozias van Aartsen said the death of Henriquez, who was visiting family, was ‘tragic and shocking’. Justice minister Ard van der Steur said on Wednesday the initial findings are 'shocking'. 'The investigation must be independent and carried out extremely carefully so we can get all the facts and decide what should be done with the police officers concerned,' the minister told broadcaster Nos. He also appealed for calm following two days of disturbances in The Hague.  More >

AIVD banned from tapping lawyers' phones

Police action probably killed Mitch Henriquez, prosecutor says The AIVD secret service may not tap lawyers' telephones unless it has been given permission by an independent body, a court in The Hague said on Wednesday. The court ruled that the AIVD has six months to officially change its current practices and warned that if the AIVD does not comply, it will be banned from tapping lawyers' phones altogether. The case was brought by criminal law firm Prakken d'Oliviera, which discovered last year that the AIVD had been listening in to conversations since 2003.  The security service regulator has already said some of the phone taps were illegal. [banner] The law firm's clients include Volkert van der Graaf, who murdered politician Pim Fortuyn and suspected terrorists, making them an interesting target for the AIVD. The court said an independent organisation needs to be established to ensure the AIVD is keeping to the law and to decide if recorded conversations can be passed on to the public prosecution department. The current system, in which the legality of taps is checked after they have been carried out, is illegal and infringes upon the right of lawyers to have confidential conversations with clients, the court said.  More >

Changes in the law from July 1

Police action probably killed Mitch Henriquez, prosecutor says A raft of new laws and amendments to existing legislation come into effect on July 1. Here is a round-up. 1. The minimum wage for adults over the age of 23 goes up by six euros to €1,507.80. 2. People with temporary employment contracts have more rights. For example, they have the right to a permanent contract after two years, rather than three. 3. Redundancy pay calculations change. From now on, people will be entitled to one-third of their monthly salary in compensation for every year worked, plus 50% of a month's salary per year for people who have been employed for over 10 years. Redundancy pay is maximised at €75,000 or one year's salary for higher earners. 4. People claiming unemployment benefit (ww) have to accept any job they are offered after six months on benefits. 5. People who work while claiming ww will be allowed to keep 30 cents of every euro they earn. The government hopes this will stimulate more jobless people to work. 6. The national mortgage guarantee only covers mortgages up to €245,000. Next January it will be cut again to €225,000. 7. Rent-controlled property will be more expensive. Rents may rise by at least 2.5% but could go up by 5% if tenants earn more than €43,786. 8. Value-added tax on home improvements and gardening goes up from 6% to 21%. 9. Computer hackers can be jailed for up to five years if they cause 'serious damage' to essential networks. Hackers who steal information face two years in jail. 10. People who are concerned about particular issues or draft legislation can collect 300,000 signatures to force the government to hold an advisory referendum. The result of the referendum is not binding. 11. The fine for failing to declare hidden income and foreign bank accounts goes up from 30% of the amount to 60% if the beneficiary reports the extra income voluntarily. If the tax office finds out you are cheating, the fine rises to up to 300%. 12. Self-driving cars can be tested on public roads. 13. Companies which use drones need a special certificate to do so. 14. Death notices can be published digitally. Sources: Nos, ANP  More >

Teen prostitute case: 29 men face charges

Police action probably killed Mitch Henriquez, prosecutor says A total of 29 men will appear in court in Maastricht charged with the sexual abuse of a 16-year-old girl in two hotels in Valkenburg, the public prosecution department said on Wednesday. Twenty-eight will face judges this month and the 29th, who has Belgian nationality, will be tried in the autumn. In January, the department said up to 80 men could face charges in connection with the case.  The girl, who was 16 at the time, disappeared from her home in October last year and was found by police having sex with a man in a Valkenburg motel in December. [banner] The men face jail terms of up to 12 years, even if they believed the girl was at least 18 – the minimum age to work as a prostitute in the Netherlands. Two of the men have since committed suicide. During Wednesday's procedural hearing, lawyer Nino Pennino said he would be demanding compensation on behalf of the girl's parents of up to €10,000 per man. 'They had the opportunity to stop what they were doing,' Pennino said. 'Just one man asked for her passport and when she refused, he left but did not call the police, leaving the child to her fate.' Pimp The girl's 21-year-old pimp, Armen A, faces three years in jail for facilitating the prostitution and appeared in court in June. A was earlier accused of forcing the girl to become a prostitute but that charge was dropped when the girl gave a statement saying she was in love with A and would do whatever he wanted. A paid for the room, negotiated with clients and has previous convictions for robbery with violence and blackmail, ANP says.  More >

Minister wants action on health insurance

Police action probably killed Mitch Henriquez, prosecutor says Health minister Edith Schippers wants insurance companies to offer fewer different policies to patients to improve transparency for consumers and has asked the national health council to monitor the situation. The current plethora of polices makes it difficult for patients to see the wood for the trees, the minister is quoted as saying by news agency ANP. The health insurance market in the Netherlands is 90% controlled by four health insurance companies but they operate dozens of different brands. In addition, insurers must stop offering basic policies with supplementary policies as a complete package, she said. This is because people should be able to take out supplementary insurance with another company if they think the deal is better. [banner]  More >