Confusion for pupils as two are arrested over stolen exam papers

Rotterdam police have arrested an 18-year-old girl and 19-year-old man in connection with the theft of school leaving exam papers, but it is still unclear what the impact will be on pupils who sat the exams last month.

Both pupils are in their final year at the Ibn Ghaldoun school in the port city and are suspected of selling the papers to other pupils. Police say exams for all three secondary school streams – vwo, havo and vmbo – are affected.

Last month, 17,000 pupils faced a one-day delay in their French exam after stolen copies of the paper, thought to come from the Ibn Ghaldoun school, were placed online.

A 22-year-old man from Rotterdam was arrested in connection with the theft but released several days later. Police still consider him a suspect.


The pupils who have been arrested are suspected of breaking into the safe where the exam papers were and photocopying them. Copies of some papers were found at their homes, Nos television said. It did not say which exams were involved.

The school exam board has not yet said what the theft of the papers means for pupils who took the exams last month or how many people may have to take the exam again.

Nor is it known how widely the stolen papers were distributed, if at all.

Thank you for donating to

We could not provide the Dutch News service, and keep it free of charge, without the generous support of our readers. Your donations allow us to report on issues you tell us matter, and provide you with a summary of the most important Dutch news each day.

Make a donation