Compensation for people wrongly held in jail reaches €23m

Last year, over 11,000 people were given a cash pay-out for being locked up in jail without good reason, the AD reports on Friday.

In total, the authorities paid out €23.1m to 11,248 people – an average of €2,057 each – the AD said, using national statistics office figures.

The number of claims reached 12,162, compared with just 4,234 ten years ago and was up 14% on 2011.

Nightly fee

People are entitled to compensation if they are found not guilty of the crime or if the crime is not considered serious enough to merit jail. The payment varies between €80 and €105 for each night spent in a cell.

The Dutch criminal justice council said research is needed to find out why the number of claims has gone up so much.

Although miscarriage of justice questions account for some of the claims, police are more likely to lock up suspects during their investigation, the council said.

For example, many of the teenagers suspected of stealing school exam papers in June were kept in custody for weeks.

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