Amsterdam police leader in embezzlement scheme given suspended sentence
Ad Smit, the former police commissioner in Amsterdam, who was dismissed in 2018 amid allegations of years of embezzlement, has been sentenced to 240 hours of community service and a three-month suspended prison sentence on Tuesday. Smit was a well-known face of the police unit in Amsterdam-Oost for around 20 years.
According to the court, Smit 'abused his position' and 'damaged the reputation of the police'. For years, the former district chief was handing out tickets for football matches purchased with police funds to his families and friends, prosecutors alleged.
In addition to football tickets, he also was accused of using police funds to buy expensive dinners and concert tickets. According to the prosecutor, Smit is believed to have embezzled almost 50,000 euros over the years.
The Police demanded that money back in the context of criminal proceedings, but the court ruled a much lower amount that the convicted man will have to repay. He was ordered to pay a bit over 2,000 euros because the court determined there was a lack of evidence.
The prosecution demanded a sentence of nine months in prison for abusing his power as a high-ranking police officer. The court handed down a substantially reduced sentence because the case dragged on for two years longer than planned. Additionally, Smit was only charged for the tickets he supplied his family members with and not those handed out to colleagues at the police or judicial authorities.
Prosecutors in the Netherlands can appeal a verdict if they believe the sentence was unjustifiably low. Likewise, Smit's legal team could file an appeal against the conviction.