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NOS News•Friday, 5:57 PM•Amended Friday, 6:05 PM
The lawyers of Nabil B., the key witness in the Marengo trial against Ridouan Taghi, want him released a year and a half earlier than agreed with the Public Prosecution Service. According to the defense, the Public Prosecution Service has blundered to such an extent that a shorter sentence is in order.
Today, the defense of Nabil B. spoke in the extra-secure court in Amsterdam. Lawyers Onno de Jong and Peter Schouten believe that their client should be released this fall. “We ask for sympathy and leniency, because the misery he had to go through after he decided to cooperate with the police and the judiciary should not really happen to a crown witness in the Netherlands.”
They lashed out at the Public Prosecution Service, which they believe has a lot to learn if it wants to use crown witnesses more often. Schouten spoke of a “toxic cocktail of naivety, incompetence and arrogance” at the Public Prosecution Service.
According to De Jong, Nabil B. has pointed out danger from the start, but he was “derided” by the Public Prosecution Service. Justice announced the crown witness deal in 2018, while little or no security measures had been taken for Nabil B.’s family. Less than a week later, his innocent brother was shot dead.
It led to a permanent crisis between Nabil B. and his family on the one hand and the Public Prosecution Service on the other. Nabil B. has conducted seven proceedings against the government to get better protection, lawyers and a confidant. In addition, the judiciary mistakenly distributed photos of Nabil B. in the criminal file no fewer than four times.
The defense believes that not only such errors, but also the fact that three people close to the key witness were murdered, should lead to a reduced sentence. As far as the OM is concerned, Nabil B. has been in prison for eight years for his own role in liquidations, the lawyers want him to be released after 6.5 years.
The key witness has now been imprisoned for almost six years. For security reasons, he is alone in detention, which means that he is socially isolated, according to his lawyers. That should also be taken into account, they think.
The Dutch Safety Board is still investigating the three murders surrounding the Marengo trial. In addition to the brother of the key witness, his lawyer Derk Wiersum and confidant Peter R. de Vries were also murdered. The final report will be published shortly.
Ridouan Taghi’s lawyer will complete her plea next week. She believes that her client should be acquitted of committing liquidations.
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