Netherlands tightens rules around releasing foreign prisoners

Klaas Dijkhoff (Photo: Commons). (Klaas Dijkhoff (Photo: Commons))

The Netherlands is tightening the rules and regulations around early release and sentence interruption for foreign prisoners as of January 1st, State Secretary Klaas Dijkhoff of Security and Justice wrote to parliament on Tuesday, AD reports.

Dijkhoff wants the new rules to prevent a repeat of an incident four years ago, in which a Polish man was released from prison early in order to visit his pregnant girlfriend. Shortly after his release, he killed a 2-year-old child and her grandparents in a hit-and-run accident. 

According to Dijkhoff, he was against the Polish man's release. But the Council for Criminal Justice and Youth Protection overruled the decision, because the council interpreted the rules differently. Dijkhoff wants to prevent this from happening again by making sure the regulations clearly state which factors will be considered in the decision to allow early release of sentence interruption.

"In that I refer to factors such as the nature, gravity, background and consequences of the offense committed", he wrote. The rules must also be clear in which cases early release will not be allowed.