Mark Verheijen (Picture: Twitter/@RaymondSalman) - Credit: Mark Verheijen (Picture: Twitter/@RaymondSalman)
VVD MP steps aside as criminal investigation ramps up
The VVD Member of Parliament Mark Verheijen has taken a temporary leave of absence because of the controversy around him filing for thousands of euros of unjustified declarations and criminal charges laid against him for bribery, NOS reports. Yesterday GeenStijl reported that it was in possession of charges laid against Verheijen by the Limburg company Taurus. Taurus is accusing the parliamentarian of corruption during his time as a councilor in Venlo. Wout Heijmans of Taurus states that Verheijen opposed him in his building plans for a cinema in Velden. In 2005 he received exemption for construction from the municipality of Arcen and Velden, but it was destroyed by the municipality of Venlo in 2010. The municipality then gave developer Piet van Pol permission to construct a cinema in the center of Venlo. In a statement Verheijen acknowledges the charges laid against him and states that it is a matter for the Public Prosecutor and he will not comment on it. The VVD's Integrity Committee is already investigating the false declaration. "I asked faction leader Halbe Zijlstra to suspend my work as a Member of Parliament until the outcome of the investigation of the Integrity Committee." he said in the statement. "Should the judgement of the Integrity Committee warrant it, I'll naturally accept the consequences attached to it."