Thursday 08 December 2022

Life sentence demanded for murder of famed Dutch journalist

The two suspects in court. Photo: Aloys Oosterwijk ANP

The prosecution has asked for life sentences for both Delano G and Kamil E, the two men charged with the murder of crime journalist Peter R De Vries in 2021.

De Vries was shot and killed in the city centre of Amsterdam last July, following an appearance on TV showbiz show RTL Boulevard. His murder, said by prosecutors to be connected to the ongoing trial of gangland leader Ridouan Taghi, was widely condemned as an attack on the press.

Victim impact statements
Both of de Vries’ children choose to give victim impact statements. They requested that both defendants turn to face them as they told the court how devastated they were by their father’s murder. ‘Peter Rudolf de Vries will forever go down in the history books, just like you. But they will say that my father was a hero,’ Kelly de Vries said.

‘I wanted to address the suspects to strike a chord, but I have now come to the conclusion that this is pointless. The suspects have such an unparalleled disrespect for life that it makes no sense,’ Royce de Vries told the court.

Together with De Vries’ girlfriend, fellow journalist Tahmina Akefi, they have asked the court to award them nearly €400,000 in compensation for their their shock and emotional loss.

Video evidence
The prosecution presented a detailed reconstruction of De Vries’ movements on the night of his death. His car could be seen entering a parking garage on the Lange Leidsedwarsstraat and then wearing a tan suit, he could be seen walking to the TV studio.

The two defendants were shown parking a silver Renault Kadjar along a canal and walking along the Lange Leidsedwarsstraat before returning to the car. According to the prosecution, Delano G then took a gun from the car, put on a hat and a black face mask and walked back to the street where he sat until de Vries walked by.

In the video, five shots could be heard and De Vries falls to the ground. The getaway car, driven by Kamil E according to the prosecution, meanwhile circled along the Prinsengracht.

Witnesses at the scene identified the car and police apprehended the pair on the A4 near Leidschendam. The murder weapon was still in the vehicle. Police also found a Google Pixel with text messages to an unknown person describing the murder.

The trial will continue next week and a verdict is expected on July 14th.

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