Former Justice Minister Ivo Opstelten admits that he made "crucial mistakes" around a settlement deal made with drug criminal Cees H. in new biography Opstelten, een leven in het openbaar bestuur published on Thursday. In the book, he says that he "totally underestimated" the issue and that he ignored the advice of his officials, AD reports.
Nearly a quarter of the Ministry of Security and Justice's employees are so unhappy that they want to resign, according to an internal satisfaction survey at the Ministry. A main complaint is a heavy workload caused by political turmoil surrounding the Ministry, ANP reports.
The survey was dome among 1,300 officials working at the Ministry. A Ministry spokesperson confirmed the figures to NU.nl on Thursday and called them "worrisome".
According to VVD Defense Minister Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, the only winner in the giant affair surrounding a deal then prosecutor Fred Teeven made with suspected drug trafficker Cees H. in 2001, is the drug dealer. "It's sad", she said to NOS. "Three Ministers already stepped down. Someone must be laughing loudly in his sleeve, and that is the criminal in question."
Stef Blok will be Minister of Security and Justice until the elections on March 15th, the VVD confirmed on Friday morning Financieele Dagblad reports. Blok is taking over from fellow VVD member Ard van der Steur, who announced his resignation on Thursday after being accused of withholding information from parliament.
Almost all the leaders of political parties feel that Ard van der Steur's decision to resign after accusations of him withholding information from MPs was inevitable. Most Dutch newspapers also seem to respect his decision to step down, but point out that there are still unanswered questions and that the VVD's position is more fragile than ever.
Justice Minister Ard van der Steur resigned his position following a hearing in parliament Thursday where angry politicians accused him of withholding information from MPs. He is the fourth politician in this cabinet forced to resign over a deal the Justice Ministry made nearly 15 years ago when Fred Teeven, then in the prosecutor's office, approved returning millions more in seized cash to an alleged drug trafficker than was told to parliament years later.
Minister Ard van der Steur of Security and Justice is facing another do or die debate in parliament this afternoon. And it seems likely that the day will end either with another official apology from the Minister - his fifth in the less than two year's he's had the position - or with him stepping down, RTL Nieuws reports.
Minister Ard van der Steur of Security and Justice denies that he withheld information about a deal made in 2001 between then prosecutor Fred Teeven and drug criminal Cees H. "I told parliament exactly what I knew", Van der Steur said to BNR.
VVD Minister Ard van der Steur of Security and Justice is again under fire about his role in a controversial deal Fred Teeven made with drug criminal Cees H. in 2001. A book journalist Bas Haan wrote about this deal revealed that Van der Steur deliberately withheld information from parliament, first as a parliamentarian and then when he took office as Minister. The VVD also had this information, the Volkskrant reports.
The crime rate in the Netherlands is much higher than the official figures reflect, according to a confidential report by the police and Public Prosecutor that newspaper Trouw has in its possession. According to the newspaper, the report speaks of the public authorities facing a looming "unbridgeable disadvantage".
The police are facing shortages in people, resources and capabilities, making it impossible for them to do their jobs, according to police union ACP. And police officers have no more confidence that politicians will be able to tackle these problems, the union determined ina survey among 1,700 police officers, ANP reports.
Anis Amri, the Tunisian man suspected of driving a truck into a Christmas market in Berlin on December 19th, spent several hours in Amsterdam two days later, Minister Ard van der Steur of Security and Justice confirmed in a letter to parliament on Wednesday. Amri was caught on surveillance cameras in the Dutch capital, the Dutch Public Prosecutor confirmed, the Telegraaf reports.
The Dutch police took tweets in which a police chief criticized Security and Justice Minister Ard van der Steur offline on Sunday, a spokesperson for the Hague police said to AD. In the tweet the police chief reacted with annoyance to Van der Steur calling violence against emergency services personnel "unacceptable".
The Dutch prosecutor's office, OM, waited about four days to notify the cabinet that the man suspected of carrying out a terrorist attack in Berlin also spent time in the Netherlands after the incident. Dutch authorities ultimately notified Minister Ard van der Steur (Security and Justice) that the suspect, Anis Amri, traveled through the Netherlands, Van der Steur said in answer to parliamentary questions on Thursday.
Opposition parties were angered by the delay in notifying the cabinet minister, calling it an apparent lack of urgency among the Dutch authorities.
Dutch parliamentarians are shocked by reports in Italian and French media stating that terrorist Anis Amri traveled through the Netherlands after he crashed a truck into a Christmas market in Berlin earlier this month. The PVV wants to call parliament back from recess to have a debate on this immediately, the Telegraaf reports.
While registering and identifying arriving asylum seekers with institutions like the IND, police, and COA goes well, too little time and equipment are available to properly identify and track down asylum seekers with terrorist plans, the Security and Justice Inspectorate says in a a report, NOS reports.
While the Netherlands often goes farther than neighboring countries in the field of counterterrorism measures, many anti-terror laws are still waiting to be implemented, according to Dutch parliamentarians. This needs to change as soon as possible, was the sentiment in the Tweede Kamer during a debate on the attack in Berlin on Monday, the Telegraaf reports.
The Tweede Kamer is the lower house of Dutch parliament.
Minister Ard van der Steur of Security and Justice is working on a fine of sorts aimed at stemming the massive flow of objections to speeding tickets and traffic fines. Motorists who want to object to a fine will first have to pay a fee. If the objection turns out to be valid, he will get that money back. If not, he forfeits the fee, AD reports.
An investigation was launched into youth institution Pactum and Youth Protection Gelderland following reports that a convicted sex offender managed to have at least three foster children placed with him in 2011, AD and the Gelderlander reports.
The investigation is being done by the Ministries of Security and Justice and Public Health, Welfare and Sports, according to the newspapers.
The Dutch hotline for internet discrimination MiND is facing heat after one of its employees suggested that hate speech against LGBT people is allowed as long as it is in the name of faith. Titus Visser, director of NL Confidential to which MiND belongs, apologized for this "error in judgement", the Volkskrant reports.
Dutch parliament wants Minister Ard van der Steur of Security and Justice to find ways to protect police officers better against people filming them during the course of their duties and then posting the videos online. Officers and their families are often harassed after the publication of such videos, PvdA parliamentarian Ahmed Marcouch said to NU.nl and the Telegraaf.
The Sinterklaas celebration with Zwarte Piet in his current blackface form can inadvertently contribute to stereotyping, prejudice and discrimination, Minister Ard van der Steur of Security and Justice wrote in a letter to parliament. The government therefore supports the tradition being adapted, NU.nl reports.
"It is difficult, for example in the U.S., to explain the tradition of Zwarte Piet in his current form", the Minister wrote, but he added that the Dutch who "always celebrate the kids party with great joy" are not directly racist.