A man suspected of assault was acquitted this morning after it turned out that Rotterdam boas had adjusted their statements afterwards. The Public Prosecution Service speaks of a bad case and calls it “a serious violation of the principle of criminal procedure.”
The ruling dates from June 22, but was only published yesterday by the Rotterdam court.
The case revolves around an incident, last April, at the parking lot of a sports club in Rotterdam. The corona measures had just come into force and boas acted against a group of people. A fight ensued. The boas were kicked, beaten and spat on. Five supervisors were injured. The suspect in question would not only have used violence, but would also have threatened boas.
The interrogation of the boas shows that two of them have admitted that they have adjusted their official report about the incident, on the advice of the police. This is the description of the suspect. Two other boas have denied, but the Public Prosecution Service says that they have also adjusted the official report.
Lawyer didn’t trust it
The case came to light because the suspect’s lawyer, Cem Kekik, had called the boas as a witness. “When my client was arrested, I already did not trust it,” he told regional channel Rijnmond. “I heard that a police report had been sent back and then I thought: this is not good. That has also turned out and the truth has come out fortunately. I fought for this for a year and a half.”
The fight in April last year led to a discussion about whether boas should be armed. Minister Grapperhaus thought so. Rotterdam mayor Aboutaleb feared that situations could escalate as a result. It was decided to carry out a one-year trial with batons in ten Dutch municipalities.