Owner in daycare sex abuse cases reinvestigated

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Police and the Public Prosecution Authority (OM) have re-opened investigations into the case around the former owner of the Hofnarretje child daycare center, Albert Drent, sources tell the NOS. 

Families of the victims in the case want Drent to be prosecuted, and have pushed for the new investigations. The court will decide today if prosecution will follow on the basis of new investigations.

According to sources, lawyer Richard Korver has given the Department of Justice visual material to strengthen the prosecution request. This material has given police and Justice reason to investigate further.

The images depict Albert Drent at a pedophile gathering in a restaurant, sources say. The Netherlands Forensic Institute is not able to confirm this. A British laboratory also inspected the images. This inspection led to the discovery of several points of likeness between the man in the images and Albert Drent.

According to the OM, those few points were insufficient to pin Drent down. Other evidence brought in is also insufficient for Drent to be criminally reproached. This evidence includes various reports about the state of affairs at the Hofnarretje, at the time when Robert M. perpetrated abuse acts in and via the daycare center. Sources say the OM has let the court know they do not have new motive to prosecute Drent.

The visual material is several years old, according to sources of the NOS, definitely from before the Amsterdam sexual abuse case became known. Most children who were abused by Robert M. attended the Hofnarretje. Robert M., dubbed 'The Monster of Riga' by national press, was given a prison sentence of 18 years, plus involuntary psychiatric treatment, for abusing at least 67 victims in May 2012. Robert M. also recorded images of himself molesting young children, and spread them on the Internet.

In November 2011, the OM decided that Drent would not be prosecuted for his role in the Amsterdam sexual abuse case. Parents of the victims do want him to be prosecuted. They suspect that Drent knew of Robert M.'s abuse activities, and also ignored parents' claims of abuse.

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