Boyfriend pushed illegal abortion on Brazilian woman found dead in Diemen, family says

Dutch police crime scene tape
Dutch police crime scene tapePhoto: Politie

A woman found dead with a baby in a Diemen apartment last month, was 32-year-old Patricia de Oliveira Santos from Fortaleza in Brazil. She was seven months pregnant when she traveled to the Netherlands to spend time with her boyfriend, her sister Fabiana told Brazilian media. The family doesn't yet know whether the deceased baby found with Patricia was the child she was expected to deliver, and more details could be revealed in court on Monday. 

Fabiana spoke to Brazilian news agencies Correio Do Povo, Terra, and UOL. Patricia met Dutch man Dennis van E. some years ago while he was vacationing in Brazil. "They've been together for three years", Fabiana said. Van E. would regularly visit Brazil and then spend months at a time with Patricia and her family. "He was always very polite with my mother and everyone at home", Fabiana said. It was one one of these visits that Patricia, who has two children from another relationship, became pregnant.

Van E. asked Patricia to come spend some time in the Netherlands with him and bought her a ticket. She left on September 28th. At that time she was seven months pregnant, according to Fabiana. Her return ticket was for December 2nd. Patricia told her family that Van E. would come back with her so she could have their baby in Brazil, Fabiana said. 

At first Fabiana had almost daily contact with her sister, and everything seemed well. "But things were changing. She even said he was very jealous, but did not say he was violent. I don't think he wanted the baby anymore", Fabiana said. Patricia told her that Van E. was pressuring her to have an illegal abortion. 

"My sister said that her boyfriend changed, that he spoke aggressively to her and wanted her to abort the baby. She asked me to talk to him so that he would give up the idea of abortion", Fabiana said. On October 15th, Fabiana messaged Van E. on WhatsApp. "He read my messages, but did not respond and blocked me. I started to get worried, but my sister texted me later saying that he had given up on the abortion and that everything was fine."

On October 18th, Van E. messaged Fabiana to say that her sister was dead. "Suddenly, the 18th, he texted me that when he woke up, he went to call my sister and she didn't wake up. That she died because she had aborted and bled a lot", Fabiana said. She asked him what happened, but got no further explanation. 

Patricia's family was officially informed about her death by the Brazilian consulate in the Netherlands on October 22nd. 

Dennis van E., a 48-year-old financial planner, was arrested shortly after Patricia and the baby were found dead in his home on Martin Luther Kinglaan in Diemen. He is suspected of death through negligence and illegal abortion. The man will appear in court again on Monday, when a judge will determine if there's enough evidence to hold him. He can be kept in custody for up to 90 days, after which a next hearing will determine any further extension of pre-trial custody.