Judge to St. Maarten for undermining crime cases

THE HAGUE–The Kingdom Council of Ministers on Friday approved the appointment of a special judge in St. Maarten in connection with the Plan of Approach to combat undermining crime.

J.J.J. Schols will be starting his new job in St. Maarten as Judge of Instruction per May 1, 2016. It concerns a temporary appointment of two years and a direct result of the Plan of Approach to combat undermining crime in the Dutch Caribbean.

“This was drafted together with St. Maarten due to complex and border-transgressing criminal cases in the tackling of undermining crime,” it was stated in a press release issued by the Dutch Government.

The decision of the Kingdom Government to appoint Schols, who currently works as Judge at the Rotterdam Court, was based on a proposal of Dutch Minister of Security and Justice Ard van der Steur, also on behalf of his colleagues of Aruba, Curaçao and St. Maarten.

Schols’ appointment is in line with a motion the Second Chamber of the Dutch Parliament adopted in April 2015. The motion of Members of Parliament Ronald van Raak of the Socialist Party (SP) and André Bosman of the liberal democratic VVD party requested that the Dutch Government initiate a large-scale investigation of the alleged ties between the underworld and upper world in Curaçao and St. Maarten, in particular the relations between politics and the gambling industry.

The Kingdom Government also approved the appointment of another judge who will be working in St. Maarten. D. Gruijters will start as the permanent Judge handling criminal cases per August 1, 2016. Gruijters currently works as Judge in the North-Holland Court.

The Kingdom Council of Ministers further approved the appointment of five alternate members for the Joint Court of Justice of Aruba, Curaçao and St. Maarten and of Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba. It concerns five judges with specialist know-how of fiscal law. The five judges – H. Kroon, M. Leijdekker, P. Pijnenburg, M. van Kempen and E. Polak – will travel to the Dutch Caribbean on an alternating basis to handle appeal fiscal cases in a multiple chamber at the Joint Court

Source: The Daily Herald Judge to St. Maarten for undermining crime cases