In the court in Amsterdam, criminal proceedings have started against 21 men and 4 women who posted hateful reactions two years ago under a live stream of journalist Clarice Gargard. They are suspected of threats, incitement and discrimination, among other things; Gargard was, among other things, threatened with a ‘shot in the neck’. Another said it was a pity that slavery had been abolished.
“You can say a lot in the Netherlands, but there are limits,” said the public prosecutor in the session. Three suspects gave a statement this morning: they say they wrote it down in a whim of anger, didn’t dwell on the consequences, and are sorry.
According to the Public Prosecution Service, two of the suspects must receive a 30-hour community service and two a fine of 350 euros.
Heard through the media
Before the case started, there was commotion about public prosecutor Jacobien Vreekamp, who was removed from the case last night. She came under fire for her additional position on the board of Meldpunt Discriminatie Regio Amsterdam, which also included Kick Out Zwarte Piet activist Mitchell Esajas. Her independence was therefore questioned by, among others, some MPs. Incidentally, she is no longer on the board.
The decision to replace her with public prosecutor Paul Velleman meets with opposition from lawyer Sidney Smeets, who represents Gargard. “It’s pretty scandalous, we had to find out through the media,” he says in it NOS Radio 1 News. “We’ve been working on this case for two years, we’ve been in contact with this prosecutor for two years.” He thinks it is nonsense that Vreekamp has to leave because of fuss on social media.