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Damage caused by curfews seems difficult to recover from the perpetrators | NOW

The late January curfew riots were accompanied by looting, arson and vandalism. Outgoing Minister Ferd Grapperhaus (Justice) and local administrators want to recover the damage from the perpetrators, but research by Faithful shows that so far only 13 of the 77 suspects have to pay compensation.

The total damage caused during the riots amounts to 1 million euros according to the Dutch Association of Insurers, but according to experts is probably higher.

Soon after the first riots, Minister Grapperhaus announced that the damage would be recovered from the rioters. “That means that without being insured, you suddenly have to compensate 10,000 euros in damage,” said the minister.

But in reality this turns out to be easier said than done. In Rotterdam, one in three arrested rioters receives a claim, according to the tour of Faithful. The court in The Hague did not oblige anyone to pay compensation and that also applies to the courts of Central Netherlands and Gelderland.

One of the reasons is that it is difficult to find out who exactly destroyed what. Camera images do not always make it possible to find out the identity of vandals.

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In addition, not everyone is on trial for the destruction itself. Some perpetrators have been convicted of inciting protests, for example. This once led to a fine of 150 for a minor boy.

‘You can’t pick from a bald chicken’

The judiciary can seize the property of suspects before they have to appear in court. This did not happen in the Rotterdam region. A spokesperson for the judiciary emphasizes that there must be something to be gained from the perpetrators or possibly their parents. “You can’t pick from a bald chicken.”

Elsewhere, the Public Prosecution Service (OM) has seized goods. This happened, for example, with the person who allegedly set fire to a corona test street in Urk. Justice seized bank accounts, cars and a house in East Brabant.

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