"Very careful" Taghi hid in Dubai for years: Dubai police chief

Police at Derk Wiersum shooting scene
Amsterdam Police cordoned off the crime scene where attorney Derk Wiersum was fatally shot. Sept. 18, 2019Image: Politie Amsterdam

Before his capture this week, suspected drug lord and organized crime boss Ridouan Taghi was in the Arab emirate of Dubai since 2016, the Chief of Police there told Dutch news program Nieuwsuur. Taghi, sought by Dutch police for years in connection with the murders of nine people, was found hiding in a luxury villa in a new district of Dubai.

The walls began to close in around Taghi when police were able to penetrate the circle of friends and acquaintances which had been helping him, said police chief Jamal al-Jallaf in the interview. This led to the discovery of his location, and his presence in the villa.

"Taghi was careful, very careful," al-Jallaf said. The curtains were always drawn shut, making it impossible to see who was present, and it was impossible even to see who entered and who left the property.

After police pinned down Taghi's location, a plan was hatched to capture him. Al-Jallaf confirmed the Dutch police's statement that Taghi surrendered without issue. The second person arrested with him was a female friend of his with Asian nationality, the police chief told Nieuwsuur. Six others associated with Taghi were arrested in the Netherlands on Tuesday, of which his sister was rumored to be one of the suspects held.

He also said he expects Taghi's extradition to take place without issue. "If all legal proceedings here have been completed through the prosecutor, in collaboration with the Dutch police, then Taghi will be extradited to the Netherlands."

The interview will be broadcast Tuesday night at 10 p.m. on NPO2.