Wednesday , December 7 2022

Concerns about capacity SXM to investigate crimes

The Daily Herald writes that Dutch coalition parties the Labour Party PvdA and liberal democratic VVD party are concerned about the capacity of the St. Maarten Prosecutor’s Office and the National Detectives to carry out investigations. Members of the Second Chamber of the Dutch Parliament Roelof van Laar (PvdA) and André Bosman (VVD) posed written questions to Minister of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Ronald Plasterk and his colleague of Security and Justice, Ivo Opstelten, on Monday.

The Members of Parliament (MPs) are concerned that the Prosecutor’s Office and National Detectives might not have sufficient capacity to carry out the necessary investigations, especially into integrity-related crimes. The Progress Committee St. Maarten had advised the Dutch government in its most recent report of July to October 2013, to make additional detectives capacity to St. Maarten. The MPs wanted to know which measures the Dutch government has taken to comply with the committee’s recommendation.

Van Laar and Bosman asked whether the temporary expansion of the National Detectives’ investigation capacity was still in effect. They inquired whether Minister Plasterk had mediated to restore the contacts between the National Detectives and Kingdom Detective Team RST, as the Progress Committee had recommended in its April-June 2013 report.

Van Laar and Bosman also asked the ministers to inform Parliament about the current status regarding the cooperation covenant between the National Detectives of Aruba and Curaçao and the RST, and the involvement of the Dutch government in this matter. The MPs wanted to know which responsibility the Dutch government has for the functioning of the St. Maarten Prosecutor’s Office. They asked Plasterk whether he still stood by his earlier statement that the Prosecutor’s Office still had sufficient capacity. Do the Prosecutor’s Offices on Aruba and Curaçao have sufficient capacity, they inquired. Van Laar and Bosman wanted to know if and how many investigations and cases received no follow-up due to the limited capacity of the Prosecutor’s Offices and National Detectives on Aruba, Curaçao and St. Maarten. The MPs suggested applying a proactive, instead of a reactive, policy to support the Prosecutor’s Offices in the three countries, as well as their National Detective units, so these judicial authorities would always have sufficient capacity and would not have to wait for decisions of the governments.

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