Man gets 15 years for 2005 murder of woman found dead in car's trunk
On Tuesday, the court in Rotterdam sentenced Leon van M. to 15 years in prison for the murder of 35-year-old Coraline van Toledo in September 2005. The woman from Oostervoone in Zuid-Holland died after being tied up and stuffed into the trunk of a car, which was then set on fire. The court considered it proven that Van M. was the one who committed this crime ,NU.nl reports.
Several witnesses have stated that Van M. told them he was responsible for Van Toledo's murder. Renewed DNA testing also found a trace of the man's DNA on the tie which was used to tie the woman up, and Van M. knew exactly how much money had been withdrawn from the woman's account after her death.
The motive for the murder remains unclear, as Van M. always denied to the authorities that he had anything to do with it. As far as is known, the perpetrator and victim did not know each other on a personal level. Witnesses suggested that Van M. was angry at Van Toledo, who worked at a pharmacy, because she refused to give him medicines.
Van M. was first arrested in 2007, but released again nine months later because there was insufficient evidence to hold him. He was arrested again in 2017.
The Public Prosecution Service demanded 20 years in prison against Van M., the maximum punishment for this crime at the time of the murder. "The court also comes to a lengthy prison sentence but finds the maximum prison sentence inappropriate", the court said in its verdict. "The fact that this is a cold case that took place more than 14 years ago is one of the reasons why the court comes to a lower prison sentence."