Populist politician's killer not going back to jail

Volkert van der Graaf, the convicted murderer of populist politician Pim Fortuyn, does not have to go back to jail, the Amsterdam court ruled on Monday. According to the court, Van der Graaf is keeping to his conditions for early release, NU.nl reports.

Van der Graaf was sentenced to 18 years in prison for murdering Fortuyn. In May 2014 he was released on parole, with a number of conditions. One of these conditions is that he had to report to the probation service every three weeks. According to the Public Prosecutor, he did show up at these meetings, but refused to give proper cooperation. "His answer show no insight into his life situation". The Prosecutor therefore believes that Van der Graaf is not keeping to his release conditions.

The Public Prosecutor told the court that since mid-2015 Van der Graaf starts every meeting with the probation service by reading a statement in which he indicates that he sees no point in the conversation. "The Prosecutor sees a pattern in the giving of the answer, but not on the asked question", the Prosecutor said, "Of giving a standard answer, of dodging questions, of not actively participating in supervision, of contesting the relevance of questions and of his obligations, of provoking discussions that distract from the content of the supervision", the prosecutor said.

"Van der Graaf prevents the probation service from gaining insight into his person and thereby denies the Public Prosecutor and thus society the opportunity to assess whether he will turn to crime again in the future. That is the allegation the Prosecutor makes against him and that is the reason his release should be revoked", according to the Prosecutor.

But the court disagrees. "Although there is difficult contact with the probation service, Van der Graaf did give basic answers to the pre-agreed questions. In previous civil proceedings the Public Prosecutor maintained the position that a basic view of reintegration is sufficient. The Prosecution could not clearly explain why that previous position should be abandoned", the court said. "The court ruled that Van der Graaf fulfilled his reporting obligation and that there is therefore no question of a violation of the conditions of his parole."

This ruling can not be appealed.

In court on January 23rd Van der Graaf accused the Public Prosecutor of setting him up for failure. "They want to make me stumble", he said. "The contact with the probation service and Public Prosecutor I experience as very unsafe."

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