Monday, 11 May 2015 - 10:26
DNA clears Dutchman in Spain rape cases; imprisoned 11.5 years
Dutchman Romano van der Dussen has been imprisoned in a Spanish prison for 11.5 years for three rapes that he didn't commit. DNA evidence shows that the crimes were committed by Englishman Mark Dixie, something that the Spanish authorities have been aware of since 2007. This is according to Spanish newspaper El Pais. In May 2005 Van der Dussen was convicted and sentenced to 15.5 years in prison for raping three women in Fuegirola, near Malaga, in August 2003. According to the newspaper, Van der Dussen's conviction was based solely on an identification parade, in which he was the only non-Spaniard. Two of the three victims identified him, despite the fact that the attacks happened at night in unlit locations. There was no forensic evidence to support Van der Dussen as the perpetrator - the fingerprints at the crime scenes were not his, nor was the DNA traces found at one of the crime scenes. Dixie was arrested in London for raping and murdering Sally Bowman in 2005, shortly after Van der Dussen was convicted, and his DNA was put on file. When the Spanish police checked the data, they found that Dixie's DNA matches the traces found in one of the Fuengirola attacks. The police also discovered that Dixie was living in Magala when the attacks happened. In 2007 the police sent a report stating this new evidence to the investigating magistrate who had overseen Van der Dussen's case. That was more than 7 years ago, and yet Van der Dussen is still in jail. According to the NU, Van der Dussen's case has now been picked up again and is currently in the hands of the Spanish Supreme Court - the Tribunal Supremo.