U.S. to extradite suspects in Limburg contract murder to Netherlands
Three Americans suspected of involvement in a contract murder in Bergen, Noord-Limburg, will be extradited from the United States very soon. The first suspect will come to the Netherlands on October 25; the other two somewhere around November 2, the Public Prosecution Service (OM) announced in the court in Roermond on Friday.
The three are suspected of killing a resident of Bergen on behalf of a Swiss man who appeared in court in Roermond on Friday for a non-substantive hearing.
The OM also announced that documents from a search in Switzerland would soon be sent to the Netherlands. These will be discussed in a subsequent non-substantive hearing. In addition to the Swiss suspect, the three Americans will also be present at that hearing. According to the OM, the three were hired by the 51-year-old Swiss to kill the 58-year-old German Thomas Schwarz in Bergen. A business conflict is the suspected motive.
The Swiss allegedly engaged a now 35-year-old American deputy sheriff as a hitman. The Swiss man was arrested in North Macedonia at the request of the Dutch authorities in July 2020 and was subsequently extradited to the Netherlands.
The three Americans are men from Connecticut, Mississippi, and Colorado. The American judiciary read the content of the three's phones. According to the OM, this showed not only a lot of mutual communication but also communication with the Swiss suspect.
During the hearing, the suspect said that he was innocent and had nothing to do with the murder. He said he suffered greatly from the situation. He only wants to make a statement if he is sure that it will not be published in American media. According to his lawyer Jeroen Soeteman, the craziest stories about him appear in the American press, harming his business and private interests.
The court extended the Swiss man's pre-trial detention on Friday.
Reporting by ANP