Long jail terms for insurance scam student flat arsonists

Three people in their 20s have been jailed for between 14 and 16 years for an arson attack on a block of student flats in Diemen which killed a 27-year-old philosophy student in 2017. Simona I, 24, her brother Gilermo, 25 and 27-year-old Rachied V were found guilty of setting the fire in order to con money out of an insurance company. Simona I lived in the flats and was hoping to make a claim for damages. Security footage showed Gilermo I and V entering the block of flats and going into an apartment, after which the hallway filled with smoke. During the hearing I said he is very sorry about what happened. 'But I cannot turn back the clock,' he told the court. The three have also been ordered to pay financial compensation to the victims. One, a journalism student, now suffers from brain damage and may be unable to complete her studies. Another has developed serious depression. The body of victim David Swart was only found hours after the fire had been put out.  More >

Police discover kitchen weed plantation

Police in Amsterdam have discovered a truly unusual built-in kitchen. Climbing through a cupboard under the kitchen sink at a property in the western port region, police discovered a cannabis plantation with about 1,000 plants. The Nieuw West police division shared their find on their Facebook page on Thursday, saying that one suspect has been arrested and investigations continue. The illegal weed-growing operation was discovered in a commercial building on the Abberdaan.   More >

Rise in reported sex crime: CBS

More sex crimes were recorded in 2018, according to the latest figures published by the CBS Dutch statistics office. Although overall crime reports dropped, following a trend since 2010, almost 9,000 people told the police they had been the victim of a sex crime in 2018, compared with 8,400 in 2017. The figure is, however, still less than the level in 2010. The CBS attributed a rise in the past few years to an increase in reports of rapes, sex assaults and also crimes such as unwanted sexting and grooming. It adds that some research suggests that only four in 10 people who suffer violent abuse or sex crimes go to the police. The official figures confirm a report by the police in January suggesting that while the total reported crime dropped by 6% last year, sex crime allegations were more common. It added that these figures do not tell the whole story. ‘In recent years, there has been a clear shift to “invisible” criminality…which people do not report but which is still a social problem,' the police report said.  More >

More drivers break speed limit by 30 kph

More drivers are being caught busting the speed limit by 30 kilometres per hour or more, according to new figures from the government's fines collection agency CJIB. Last year, over 72,000 motorists were fined for driving between 30 and 100 kph faster than the legal speed limit, a rise of 10% on 2017, the Volkskrant reported on Friday. While most cases involved driving on the motorway, 17 drivers were picked up for driving over 100 kph faster than permitted in built up areas. People caught driving between 30 kph and 50 kph over the speed limit face heavier fines, from 50 kph drivers can lose their licence and those caught breaking the speed limit by 100 kph or more could have their cars impounded. The national statistics agency CBS said last December three-quarters of the Netherlands’ 9,000 Tesla drivers picked up a speeding ticket in 2017, the highest proportion of any car brand. Of the 30 best sold car brands in the Netherlands, Audi drivers were also most likely to be fined, followed by BMW drivers and Volvo owners.  More >

Man killed by police 'wanted to die'

The man shot dead by police near the Dutch central bank in Amsterdam on Wednesday evening suffered from severe anxiety and had wanted to die, his mother has told the Parool. Mickey Fudge, 31, was shot multiple times by police officers after waving what turned out to be a replica gun at them. A passing cyclist was shot in the leg. The shooting happened shortly after Fudge, a dual Dutch British national, left the house he shared with his mother after playing a board game to go for a walk. A short while later, his mother heard the police sirens and after putting on the television, was able to identify her son's shoes on a blurred picture of the victim. 'I phoned the police, I gave a statement for hours,' she said. 'He is not a terrorist or a bank robber.' Fudge suffered from psychiatric problems as a child and had gone through 'four of five psychiatrists,' she told the paper.   More >

Egg trader fined €30,000 for fraud

An egg trader from Mijnsheerenland in Zuid-Holland has been fined €30,000 for fraud after passing off contaminated eggs as fit for human consumption and battery eggs as free range. The eggs were stamped with fake registration numbers, making it impossible to track their origins and allowing the trader to 'damage confidence in the sector,' the public prosecution department said in court on Wednesday. Inspectors from the food safety board NVWA found 280,000 unstamped eggs at the trader's warehouse in June 2018 as well as 'free range' eggs from a farm which said it had never done business with the trader. Some of the eggs were found to contain high levels of the pesticide fipronil. 'The public prosecution department is particularly concerned that the suspect had not made it possible to check the production plant where the contaminated eggs had come from,' the spokesman said in court. 'The suspect has made it possible for these eggs to enter the food chain.' In 2017, millions of Dutch eggs were destroyed after they were found to be contaminated with the pesticide fipronil. The court took the unusual step of giving its verdict immediately, ordering the trader to serve 100 hours community service and to pay a fine of €30,000.  More >

Police in The Hague hunt random stabber

Dutch police car close-up Police in The Hague are appealing for witnesses after a tall man with a strong English accent attacked two people at random with a knife. The first victim was a 17-year-old youth who was stabbed in the arm after trying to stop the suspect sticking a knife in his bicycle tyre. The youth was able to call the police and was taken to hospital for treatment. The second incident took place around 7.30pm, 15 minutes after the first. In that instance a jogger was stabbed several times while out running. He went to hospital which then alerted the police. Police have issued a description of the man they want to interview. He is described as tall and an ‘alternative type’ wearing dark clothes, three-quarter length trousers and big boots. He is also said to be in his late 20s and to have a strong English accent.   More >

Amsterdam police kill man with gun

Police badge and radio. Amsterdam police have shot dead a man who waved a gun at them outside the central bank offices at around 7.15pm on Wednesday evening. The victim is said to be a 31-year-old local. A passerby was also injured in the incident. Police have not yet said if the man fired shots at police but in total, 14 shots can be heard on a video taken by an eyewitness. Op deze foto is te zien dat er bij De Nederlandse Bank een man is neergeschoten, een omstander spreekt over twintig schotenhttps://t.co/oR0E51XY0S pic.twitter.com/CWq6WhBTGX — AT5 (@AT5) February 6, 2019 A spokesman for the central bank said there is no apparent connection between the shooting and the location of the bank. Soon after the shooting, a car was stopped by a police arrest team at a petrol station on the Gooiseweg in Amsterdam. The people in the car were arrested. The Parool said it is not known if there is any connection between the arrests and the central bank shooting. IJburg Shortly before midnight there was another shooting incident in Dutch capital, this time in the IJburg residential area. There an eyewitness walking his dog saw two men on a moped fire several shots at another man before driving off. The 43-year-old victim survived the attack and police are appealing for witnesses. 10 meter voor Mn ogen, schietpartij #ijburg #georgesliekerkade tijdens doggiewalk. Slachtoffer meerdere keren geraakt. Daders op scooter weggereden. Heftige shizzle. Een duidelijk signalement doorgegeven. pic.twitter.com/wA7HrGUDB6 — MaRiO (@Marios020) February 6, 2019 He was later identified as former professional footballer Yassine Abdellaoui who has played for Willem II, NAC Breda, Spanish club Rayo Vallecano, NEC and De Graafschap. He later became involved in a long running court case involving laundering cash derived from the ecstasy trade but was finally found not guilty on appeal, 11 years after the case began, the Parool said.  More >