US, parliament up pressure over senior civil servant abuse claims
Pressure is mounting on the government from the US and Dutch parliament to properly investigate claims that the most senior justice ministry civil servant has a history of abusing young boys.
MPs have urged justice minister Ivo Opstelten to react to claims that his most senior civil servant, Joris Demmink, has had contacts with a pimp who specialises in young boys, the AD reports on Monday.
A number of witnesses told the AD at the weekend Demmink, 64, met the paedophile pimp in the early 1980s, a claim which Demmink denies.
‘These sort of stories continue to hang around the secretary general,’ CDA MP Peter Oskam told the paper.
The AD claims a previous justice minister, Piet Hein Donner, was warned by two of his senior staff about giving Demmink the top job. Donner said at the time there was ‘no evidence for the rumours’.
Meanwhile, the Dutch government is also coming under pressure from the US to investigate claims against Demmink.
Last week, the chairman of the Helsinki Commission, a US agency created to monitor compliance with treaties on security and cooperation in Europe, urged the Netherlands to carry out a proper investigation into claims he raped two under-age Turkish boys in the 1990s.
On its website, the Commission says: ‘The Dutch authorities have conducted only preliminary investigations, but many have found them grossly unsatisfactory as Dutch authorities have interviewed only one of three victims and none of the available witnesses or facilitators of the alleged crime—including Turkish law enforcement who have come forward to contradict Demmink’s statements.’
One of the accusers has reportedly faced threats and abuse for coming forward with his story, news agency CNA said.
US congressmen Chris Smith, who chairs the Helsinki Commission, said: ‘It is imperative the justice system be ready to listen to allegations and to thoroughly investigate allegations no matter when they are raised – and no matter who is accused.’
The Netherlands has Tier 1 Status, which means it fully complies with minimum standards to fight human trafficking but witnesses told the Commission this status should now be dropped.
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