The parliamentary debate on the national budget on Thursday was apparently not exciting enough to keep the attention of all those present. Ministers Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security and Cora van Nieuwenhuizen of Infrastructure and Water Management were caught watching football while Prime Minister Mark Rutte spoke.
A special anti-drug unit, based on the American Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), will be established in the Netherlands, Justice Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus announced on Thursday after the murder of defense lawyer Derk Wiersum in Amsterdam. But more than that will be needed in the fight against organized crime, Eirk Heijdelberg, director of Willem Schrikker Youth Protection, said to broadcaster NOS.
The fight against organized crime is complicated, but can be won, Prime Minister Mark Rutte said on the second day of the parliamentary debate on the national budget. Ferdinand Grapperhaus agreed with Rutte’s standpoint. The Security and Justice Minister from the PM’s conservative VVD party backed a call from several politicians to form a specialized unit focused solely on tackling drug crime.
Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security is looking for more money to push into the fight against organized crime, he said on Thursday morning, one day after defense attorney Derk Wiersum was assassinated outside of his Amsterdam Home. "If we really want to achieve success over organized crime, we have to take an extra step", Grapperhaus said, Het Parool reports. "More than we have done so far, also if it means extra resources."
The Public Prosecution Service will keep using key witnesses, even after the murder of criminal law attorney Derk Wiersum in Amsterdam on Wednesday morning. "We must continue to use the means of key witnesses, otherwise we will get no further in criminal cases. Continue in a motivated way", prosecutor Fred Westerbeke said to Nieuwsuur. He wants more options in the use of such suspects-turned-informants.
Authorities investigating the murder of criminal defense attorney Derk Wiersum in Amsterdam have joined forces with Dutch counter-terrorism agency NCTV in the hunt for the perpetrator. Police are still searching for the suspect they believe to be responsible for the crime.
The entire Amsterdam city council wants an emergency debate with Mayor Femke Halsema on undermining crime after the murder of criminal law attorney Derk Wiersum in the city on Wednesday morning. Wiersum represented key witness Nabil B., who linked fugitive Ridouan Taghi to a number of gangland assassinations.
Five Dutch banks want to team up and establish an organization to tackle money laundering together. The idea is that by viewing the banks' total 10 billion transactions per year together, it will be easier for the organization - which they plan to call Transactie Monitoring Nederland (TMNL) - to identify suspicious activities, the Dutch association of banks NVB said to RTL Nieuws.
Dutch journalists and aid workers will soon need permission from the Ministry of Justice and Security to work in areas controlled by terrorists. A majority in the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, on Tuesday approved a legislative amendment by Justice Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus to this effect, NOS reports.
As the appeal in the hate speech case against PVV leader Geert Wilders continued in the high security court at Schiphol on Tuesday, his lawyer Geert-Jan Knoops demanded that the case be declared inadmissible due to political interference in the decision to prosecute, NOS reports. The prosecutor denied that any interference occurred, and pressed for the case to move forward as scheduled.
In the first half of this year, the Dutch police registered 5,113 cases of aggression and violence against police officers. These figures are usually released on an annual basis, but the police decided to release provisional figures at the media's request after four cops were injured during arrests in Rotterdam over the weekend, NOS reports.
Former Justice Minsiter Ivo Opstelten and the Public Prosecution Service discussed the prosecution of PVV leader Geert Wilders for hate speech even before the Public Prosecution Service had made the decision to prosecute the nationalist politician, RTL Nieuws report based on a secret official document it received from the Ministry of Justice and Security. Wilders is furious and demands that the case against him be dropped
A report stating that Amsterdam is losing the fight against organized crime led to alarmed and shocked reactions from politicians in The Hague. Parliamentarians call on the government to invest more into combating this issue, the Telegraaf reports.
The report stated that the authorities have little insight into drug economy and -crime, that the police have basically given up the fight against drugs, and that the judiciary is failing to tackle real crime structures.
The names of the ten municipalities that will participate in the Dutch government's experiment with regulated cannabis cultivation leaked on Wednesday evening. In addition to Breda, Tilburg and Almere, which were already known, the other municipalities are Groningen, Maastricht, Nijmegen, Arnhem, Zaanstad, Heerlen, and Hellevoetsluis, ANP reports.
Johan van Laarhoven, a Dutch man who used to own coffeeshops The Grass Company in the Netherlands, was sentenced to 75 years in prison in cassation in Thailand. No further appeal is possible against this ruling, making the sentence final, his lawyer said to RTL Nieuws.
The Public Prosecution Service is not displeased that Minister Grapperhaus of Justice and Security is meeting with the Prime Minister of Thailand to see if he can get Dutch coffeeshop owner Johan van Laarhoven extradited to the Netherlands, the Prosecutor said in a statement. Van Laarhoven is currently serving a prison sentence of 103 years in Thailand.
After a nice summer break, the Dutch government is back at work. The Ministers will meet for the first time again on Friday, to catch up on current affairs under the leadership of Prime Minister Mark Rutte during the Council of Ministers, Hart van Nederland reports.
The only Minister still on holiday is Ferdinand Grapperhaus, who stood in for Rutte during the summer and still has some vacation days to catch up on.
Laughing gas may no longer be sold at events in Rotterdam or on and around the Nesselande beach in the city. Mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb amended a police regulation to make this ban possible. It takes effect immediately, NOS reports.
There are problems like racism, intimidation and sexual misconduct within the police, and National Police Chief Erik Akerboom works every day to reduce them. But it is an illusion that he can put an end to all these abuses within a few years, the police chief said in television program Jinek, NOS reports.
Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security is committed to fighting drug crime in the Netherlands. And to do so, he thinks that the number of festivals held in the Netherlands should be reduced. There are too many festivals in the country, and the police can't enforce drug law at all of them, he said in an interview with the Telegraaf.
The emergency services never practiced a scenario in which emergency number 1-1-2 is completely unreachable, as happened last week Monday. The police considered the chance of this situation occurring to be minimal, Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security wrote in a letter to parliament. A third person died during the outage. The person went into cardiac arrest in The Hague and emergency services took longer than usual to reach them, NOS reports.
Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security wants to eradicate child pornography on the internet. For that reason he is working on a new law under which internet companies who do not remove child porn at lightning speed, can face hefty fines, RTL Nieuws reports.
"It is certainly an enormous ambition, but I m going to do everything I can about it", the Justice Minister said. "I cannot guarantee an internet without child pornography, but I want to substantially reduce the share of child pornography on the internet in two years."
Banning cash payments of over 3 thousand euros, regulating cryptocurrencies, and calling for the 500 euros banknote to be taken out of circulations are two of a large package of measures against money laundering that Ministers Wopke Hoekstra of Finance and Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security sent to parliament on Monday.
The cause of an outage at KPN on Monday that left emergency number 112 and the police call center unreachable for over three hours, is still unknown, Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security said in a letter to parliament on Tuesday. KPN assured him that the outage affected KPN systems and not the "112-platform" itself, the Minister said.