Thursday 04 June 2020

Police tapped The Hague aldermen’s phones for months in corruption probe

The Hague’s city hall. Photo: Ellywa via Wikimedia Commons

Police phone taps focusing on the two The Hague aldermen suspected of corruption appear to confirm they provided night licences for bars and cafes in return for bribes, the NRC  reported over the weekend.

The paper said police were informed of possible illegal dealings by deputy mayor and economic affairs aldermen Richard Mos and city finances alderman Rachid Guernaoui in the second half of 2018.

The information the police received was serious to warrant a probe including a phone tap lasting a number of months, the paper said.

The taps revealed the two aldermen ‘organised licences’ for various bar and café owners, the paper said. It is not known whether last week’s raid on the aldermen’s offices and homes produced any incriminating evidence.

Last week The Hague’s city administration collapsed after three of the four coalition parties withdrew their support following the corruption scandal which had hit Groep de Mos/Hart voor Den Haag group – the biggest party on the council.

A lawyer representing De Mos told the paper that ‘Richard has you know that he has always acted honourably and that he never did anything for personal gain.’.

Guernaoui’s lawyer said the former alderman was ‘shocked his phone was tapped, especially since he was not aware of any wrongdoing.’

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