A 43-year-old man who defrauded a child cancer charity of some €600,000 should be jailed for 3.5 years, the public prosecution department said at his trial in Amsterdam on Thursday.
Erwin de Kruijff is alleged to have used money raised by the Quality of Life charity to pay for renovations and the mortgage on his home in Scherpenzeel. He is also said to have put some of the cash into his wife’s cosmetics business.
A second man, Patrick van Zuiden, who was the charity’s treasurer, faces 240 hours community service for turning a blind eye to the theft.
‘People entrust money to good causes because they want to help people,’ the prosecutor said. ‘This trust is crucial. Without trust there will be no donations and without money no research.’ The fraud came to light in 2011 during a routine control.
Much of the money was raised for the charity during gala events attended by celebrities, some of whom also performed for free.
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