OM demands life sentence against suspects in the murder of lawyer Derk Wiersum
On Friday, the Public Prosecution Service (OM) demanded a life sentence for the two suspects in the murder case of lawyer Derk Wiersum. According to the OM, the "cold-blooded" murder was intended to "influence the course of the Marengo trial, for example by breaking the willingness of the main witness to testify." According to the judiciary, "a clear and unmistakable signal" must be sent to contract killers who do not shy away from attacking the rule of law.
Wiersum, 44, was one of the lawyers for Nabil B., the main prosecution witness in Marengo, the large-scale, long-running liquidation trial of prime suspect Ridouan Taghi. The legal adviser was shot dead at his home in Amsterdam-Buitenveldert on September 18, 2019.
The two suspects, Moreno B. (34) and Giërmo B. (39, not related), are on trial at the Amsterdam Court of Appeal in the high-security hall of Schiphol Airport. They also denied on appeal that they were the perpetrators of the shocking murder. The court sentenced them to 30 years in prison in 2021, following a demand for life imprisonment. Both the defendants and the prosecution appealed the verdict.
However, the OM considers the two men to be so-called accomplices. Apparently, they worked closely together in the preparation and execution of the contract killings. The crime was preceded by numerous investigative procedures. First by so-called spotters, who observed the corridors of the intended target. From the end of August 2019, Moreno B. and Giërmo B. are said to have taken over. Using stolen cars, they allegedly drove through Wiersum's residential neighborhood several times before finally striking. The lawyer was shot as he got into his car shortly after 7:30 a.m. to drive to work. "He didn't have a chance," the Public Prosecution Service said.
The defendants' denial statements are implausible, according to the judiciary. "Lies, falsehoods and implausibilities," summarized the Advocate General. He pointed out that "openness" can mitigate punishment even if the defendants do not show the back of their tongues.
In March 2018, Nabil B.'s brother, Reduan, was murdered. Later, In July 2021 followed the murder of Peter R. de Vries, a confidant of the key witness. The connection between the murders seems obvious, the judiciary agreed. Therefore, the intermediaries and principals are still under investigation. The murderer of Reduan is now irrevocably convicted. Seven suspects are in custody as part of the investigation into the murder of De Vries, including the two alleged perpetrators. The trial against them is still ongoing.
On Tuesday, the lawyers for the suspects in the Wiersum case will make their pleas.
Reporting by ANP