Scientists who investigated the Schiphol airport detention fire assumed the fire was the result of arson, Peter van de Leur of DGMR which carried out the investigation for the public prosecution department, told the court on Tuesday.
‘From the beginning we thought tests would prove arson,’ he told the Haarlem court on the second day of the trial of Achmed Al-Jeballi, the Volkskrant reported.
Eleven people awaiting deportation were killed when fire swept through a cell block in October 2005.
Under cross-examination by defence lawyer Eduard Damman, Van de Leur admitted that 28 tests later the evidence pointed more towards an accident.
But according to ex-marine and private investigator Fred Vos, a defence witness, even that scenario was not properly investigated. ‘People have tried to guide the evidence, ‘ he said. ‘That’s a bit different to scientific investigation.’
Al Jeballi has always maintained the fire started when he flicked away the end of his cigarette and his bedding caught fire.
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