Some 17 arrested suspects out on bond disappeared before trial

Police guard in a detention center
Police guard in a detention center. (Photo: Politie)

Over the past three years 17 criminals in the Netherlands dropped off the radar after a judge released them on bond, the Public Prosecutor confirmed to RTL Nieuws after reports in the Telegraaf. "The highest bond amount paid is a million euros", a spokesperson for the Prosecutor said to the broadcaster.

Dutch judges increasingly decide to let a suspect await trial at home if he paid bond money, mostly involving drug and money cases. Over the past three years a total of 232 suspects were released on bond. 17 of them never came back. That amounts to about 7 percent of the cases. In cases where a suspect is released with an ankle monitor, only 2 percent escape.  

The Telegraaf reports that the bonds imposed on suspects are relatively low in some cases and the authorities hardly ever immediately check where the suspect got the bond money from. A spokesperson for the Council of Justice told RTL Nieuws that he understands the concerns surrounding the origin of bond money. "The trouble is that the judge must make a quick decision."

The Public Prosecutor spokesperson said that it is not up to them to check where the money comes from. "If there is a smell about the money, that's the responsibility of the banks. They can report an unusual transaction if they suspect it's criminal money."