Thursday, February 11, 2016 - 09:45
Netherlands pleased Spain overturned rape conviction
The Netherlands is happy with the Spanish Supreme Court's decision to over turn the rape conviction against Dutchman Romano van der Dussen. "It took a long time, but finally there is clarity", Minister Bert Koenders of Foreign Affairs said. "I am relieved and pleased for Mr. Van der Dussen." Van der Dussen was convicted of rape and two cases of attempted rape in Spain in 2004. He spent nearly 12 years in prison before being acquitted on appeal on Wednesday. According to Koenders, his Ministry and the Prison Law Foundation actively worked to get the Spanish authorities to pay attention to the case once increasing evidence emerged that Van der Dussen may not be guilty. In a previous statement Koenders said: "Someone who may be wrongfully convicted, has to get clarity quickly. I can well imagine the frustration." The Spanish court eventually decided to reopen the case. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is currently assisting 2,100 Dutch people in foreign prisons. 210 Dutch are imprisoned in Spain.