ChristenUnie politician reportedly arrested for trying to lure an 11-year-old girl
The ChristenUnie suspended a councilor in the Friesland municipality of Tytsjerksteradiel because he is suspected of a serious sex crime. According to local news site Waldnet, Edwin van E. has been in custody for a month for grooming an 11-year-old girl for a sexual encounter.
Waldnet reports that Van E. was arrested near Rotterdam at the end of December. The 11-year-old girl's stepfather was also present during the arrest. He gave Van E. "a few blows," according to Waldnet. On January 6, his pretrial custody was extended by 90 days.
The Public Prosecution service confirmed that a man from Friesland was arrested near Rotterdam on December 21 on suspicion of "seducing a minor to commit fornication." Therefore, the suspicion is not about actual child sex abuse, according to the Public Prosecution Service.
Van E. was a temporary councilor and was on the list of candidates for the upcoming municipal elections, the party said. He was removed from the list and suspended as a party member.
The councilor informed the party on January 6 that he had to resign from the list of candidates due to "personal circumstances." The party had no contact with him since.
The substantive hearing of the case is scheduled for April 6. Even though Van E. has not been convicted yet, he cannot be a "credible representative" of the party, according to local faction chairman Douwe Hooijenga and party chairman Ankie van Tatenhove. ChristenUnie will decide whether or not to expel Van E. after the ruling.
Reporting by ANP.