20 years for murder of key witness' brother

The court sentenced 40-year-old Shurandy S. to 20 years in prison for murdering Reduan B., brother of key witness Nabil B. The judge considered it conclusively proven that S. gunned down the innocent man at his business in Amsterdam on March 29th last year, RTL Nieuws reports.

S. previously confessed to committing the murder and that someone ordered him to do so, but refused to say who gave him his orders. He said he was promised 100 thousand euros for the murder, which he needed to finance his cocaine addiction. He claimed he never got the money. The Hilversum man was arrested two days after the murder, based on a DNA match and surveillance camera footage. "It was a murder on order. Shurandy S. has shown no respect for the life of the victim", the judge said.

The victim Reduan B. was the brother of Nabil B., who was presented by the Public Prosecutor as a key witness in the investigation into a series of gang related assassinations a week before his brother was killed. Nabil B. made a number statements, among other things linking Ridouan Taghi - considered the Netherlands' most wanted criminal - to 12 assassinations or attempts thereto

According to the Public Prosecutor, Reduan's murder was "undoubtedly" retribution for Nabil B.'s cooperation with the judiciary. 

S. previously told the court that he had no idea who he was killing. It was not until he came home and saw the news that he realized what he had done. "Then I thought: the shit hit the fan." But according to the Prosecutor, S. should at least have known that the man he was murdering was not a criminal. S. gunned Reduan down at the man's own company during business hours, and then went off to work "as if nothing was wrong", the Prosecutor said. According to the Prosecutor, this shows S.'s cold-bloodedness. "This is not a man who is confused, he is fully accountable."

The Prosecutor demanded 28 years in prison against S. But the court ruled that there is no reason to assume that S. knew his victim was the brother of the key witness. The court therefore imposed a lower penalty.

On Wednesday Het Parool reported about WhatsApp messages which show that Reduan B. was terrified that Taghi would take revenge on him because his brother turned witness. The Amsterdam entrepreneur hardly slept and constantly worried about his family's security. "We do not matter, we are collateral damage", he texted two days before he was killed. The Public Prosecutor always stated that Reduan B. only accepted limited security when the key witness deal was made public. But according to his family, this was not the case.

Since Reduan's murder, Nabil B.'s entire family has been in hiding. His mother said that her days are filled with grief over Reduan's death and fear of losing someone else. According to his family, Reduan was a hard-working, honest man who was averse to everything that had to do with crime. He is survived by two daughters and many loved-ones and friends.