The Netherlands most wanted man, Ridouan Taghi, has been arrested at a private home in Dubai.
The arrest was made following ‘Dutch police effort and intensive international cooperation with the Dubai police, rather than a tip-off,’ Dutch police said in a statement.
The Dutch public prosecution service has made a formal request for his extradition.
‘He is one of the world’s most dangerous and wanted men and listed on Interpol for his connections to serious organised crime,’ Dubai police chief Abdullah Khalifa Al Merri is quote as saying by Gulf News. ‘He was arrested in Dubai in a residential villa after he entered the country using a different ID.’
The Netherlands does not have an extradition treaty with Dubai and it will be up to local judges to decide if he should be sent back. Senior public prosecutor Fred Westerbeke said that while this may take some time, they do expect Dubai officials to comply.
Taghi is the main suspect in a gangland trial involving five murders and several attempted murders in a case known as Marengo, which is due to start in March. The brother of crown witness Nabil B is one of the murder victims.
Shurandy S, the man who shot his brother dead, was sentenced to 28 years in jail on Monday, but Taghi is suspected of ordering the killing. He is also thought to be behind the murder of lawyer Derk Wiersum, who was representing Nabil B in the ongoing investigation. That murder is not part of the Marengo trial.
Taghi’s deputy Saïd Razzouki is still at large.
The Telegraaf said in July that Taghi was living in Dubai, where his wife and six children had been living for some time.
Taghi’s arrest is ‘of major importance for the Netherlands,’ Dutch police chief Erik Akerboom said. ‘Taghi and his ilk’s criminal activities are a threat to the rule of law.’
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