Karst Tate was ‘most probably’ planning to drive into a bus carrying the Dutch royal family during the Queen’s Day celebrations in Apeldoorn on April 30, the public prosecution department said in a statement on Tuesday.
Seven people were killed when Tates ploughed into the crowd watching the bus arrive. The car then swerved into railings. Tates died later of his injuries.
‘When asked whether he deliberately wanted to hit the coach, Karst Tates replied affirmatively. This was also heard by another investigator,’ the department said in a statement.
Tates, a loner who had recently lost his job and was about to lose his home, was probably unaware people would be standing on the crossroads when he drove at the bus. He did sound his horn as he approached but did not slow down and did not appear to have attempted to break, the report said.
The department said the black Suzuki Swift had changed direction after hitting the crowd. If it had collided with the bus carrying the queen and other members of the royal family ‘the passengers would have sustained injuries, minor to serious, depending on the speed of the car and the exact angle of the impact’.
The police officer, who sat in the car with Tates after the Suzuki came to a standstill, asked him what had happened.
‘I heard him say: ‘the queen, the queen’,’ the officer was quoted as saying. ‘I asked him had he acted deliberately and I heard him say ‘yes, I did it on purpose’. I asked him why and he said ‘Willem-Alexander is a facist, he is a racist’. And I knew the queen was coming here’.’
The report states that Tates acted alone and had not made elaborate preparations. Nevertheless, it is still difficult to determine what motive he had for the attack, the report states. Although Tates was critical of the monarchy, he did not believe in an ideology which would make sense of what he did, the report said.
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