Woman on trial for murdering boyfriend with poison in 2020 found dead in Tilburg
A deceased woman found Monday morning inside a home in Tilburg was identified as 64-year-old murder suspect Yvon K. The woman is suspected of poisoning her boyfriend, and has been on trial for the man's death. A verdict was set to be delivered by the District Court in Breda on Wednesday, but the situation became uncertain as Dutch law prevents the prosecution of a criminal suspect who has died.
The cause of Yvon K.'s death was still being investigated Monday evening, but the Public Prosecution Service said that a suicide note was found in the home in Tilburg. K.'s attorney, Esther Vroegh, also confirmed the death of her client earlier in the day. Emergency services responded on Monday morning to the home, and forced the front door open to make entry at about 10:18 a.m. The dead woman was found inside.
Grinwis, a supermarket owner, died in the evening of December 8, 2020, or early the following morning. He died in his home on Dorpsstraat in Halsteren, Noord-Brabant. A high dose of a suicide drug was found in his blood, a case of poisoning, the prosecutor alleged in the case against K.
The same euthanasia drug that killed Grinwis was found in K.'s home. According to the Public Prosecution Service, the deadly substance was found in a wine glass and in the remains of a cherry yogurt dessert. In addition, substances were found in the victim's body that the suspect had looked up on her iPad prior to his death, according to the Public Prosecution Service.
K. was a consultant for a Dutch association promoting voluntary end-of-life. She had started a relationship with Grinwis on the day of his wife's funeral in May 2020. Two months before his death, Grinwis had amended his will to name his girlfriend as the sole heiress. She was arrested in October 2021 and spent eleven months in pre-trial detention. The motive was believed to be financial. “Money is everything to her,” the prosecutor said. Some 227,000 euros was found in cash in a safe that K. rented, and Grinwis paid for her home renovation, and gave her a 50,000 euro car.
During the trial, K. denied all allegations, saying "I've been inside a nightmare for three years." She added, "I'm on a rollercoaster. I'm completely destroyed. We were very much in love with each other. My life is now completely destroyed. I didn't kill him." Prosecutors countered that, by saying their relationship was frequently combative in the six months prior to the victim's death.
At the beginning of this month, the Public Prosecution Service said in court that K. should be convicted of murder, and sentenced to 19 years in prison. The Breda court announced that a hearing in the case will still happen, but the judges involved in the case will explain what that entails on Wednesday.
The Public Prosecution Service has informed Grinwis' surviving relatives of this news. "Under Article 69 of the Criminal Code, we cannot prosecute a deceased suspect. So with the death of the suspect, the possibility of delivering justice in this case has been blocked," said the prosecutors in this case. "This is very unsatisfactory, because the court will no longer get around to answering whether it considers it proven that the suspect murdered her boyfriend, Chris Grinwis. This is certainly also unpalatable for Grinwis' relatives."
Vroegh called it "extremely unsatisfactory" for all involved if there is no verdict. "There has been a battle for two years and it ends just before the conclusion."
Reporting by ANP