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Is it juridically allowed that a prosecutor will not see all the official complaints?

by Marthijn Uittenbogaard


Approximately two weeks ago, the 27th of July, I made an official complaint by the police in my hometown Hengelo. The day before I was threatened by a man in front of my house while I was painting my garden fence. The man, sitting in his car, his girlfriend(?) sitting next to him, threatened and insulted me for minutes. He talked very aggressive and said things like: 'You are the lowest of the lowest,' 'Those camera's won't stop me,' 'Dirty coward,' 'We're gonna get you,' 'You're going to leave here we'll take care of that,' 'I'm going to push that paint bucket through your throat.' Et cetera. All the time he was very aggressive. Afterwards, when he drove off, I went inside and I immediately wrote down the number plate of his car together with some quotes he just said to me. I also thought I can't paint my garden fence when my partner is not at home.

As I said, I went to the police and they advised me to make no complaint. A complaint would be useless because only threatening someone with death is punishable by law the policewoman told me. I know this is not true. Threatening with violence is also a crime. She went away for a minute to discuss this with her colleagues and afterwards she still said the same. I still wanted to make a complaint and that's what I did.

I also asked who would be going to judge my complaint? She said that a local person, a sort of manager, at the police station in Hengelo would check if a court case is feasible. If the complaint is to weak or the information about the wrongdoer is to weak than the complaint won't go to the prosecutor. The prosecutor will in the end decide if the case will be brought to a judge. If you don't agree with a case being not brought to court you van start an article 12 procedure. In that case, a judge can order the Public Prosecution Service to bring the case in front of a judge.

Today, I was called by telephone by the police of Hengelo: they will not make a court case out of my complaint. I asked who had decided this and the policeman said someone at the local police station. So no prosecutor has seen my complaint. In 2013 I got death threats wile I was walking in the town Deventer. The police came after we, I was with a friend, called 112. The boy, he was below eighteen, admitted to the police that the had threatened me with death. Later I was called by the police that they would not start a court case. The person who threatened me was a known person (known by the police for his previous behavior) they said and if he does something else in the next year we will add your complaint to his record.

I'm threatened a lot of times. On the streets, in the train, everywhere I go I'm not save. Can I paint my garden fence? Yes, but it's dangerous. When someone, but especially an opinion maker, is threatened, than it's a bad thing for a free society. The threats I receive are structural. Letting this happen as a society is a very wrong choice.

Today I read that someone was brought to court because she had threatened our Prime Minister Mark Rutte on the Internet. The Public Prosecution Service said we can't tolerate such threats.

I remember a group of persons aged around twenty that threw bricks at my house. A police car was nearby and I explained what had happened and I pointed to the boys. All the police did was nothing, waiting for them to escape on their bicycles and when they were out of side they drove 'walking speed' in that direction. The highest Dutch court in The Netherlands disbanded the Martijn Association, because the truth cannot be said in an organized way. Should I start a so called article 12 procedure in such a climate? In a country that does not respect basic human rights?

What about the man who threatened me? Well, the city block agent (the so called wijkagent, every dutch area has such an appointed police agent) will have a chat with him. That's what I was told. If this chat really has or will take place I don't know. I also don't know what he or she will say to him.

English versus Dutch
Complaint = Aangifte
Prosecutor = Officier van justitie
Public Prosecution Service = Openbaar Ministerie


9 August 2017


[Below the Dutch text I wrote down after the incident. This text I took with me going to the police:]

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Datum en tijdstip bedreiging: 26-07-2017 – ongeveer: 14:55 uur

Betreft: bedreiging door automobilist toen ik in de voortuin mijn hekje aan het verven was.

Kenteken: [edit], lichte kleur auto (later via internet opgezocht en dat geeft een grijze Mercedez-Benz, bouwjaar 1990; foto van zo'n auto komt wel overeen met mijn herinnering van de auto).

Minuten lang ging de bestuurder van de auto tegen mij tekeer, zijn raampje stond open. Zijn vriendin zat naast hem, zij heeft niets gezegd.

Nadat hij weg was ben ik naar binnen gegaan, heb het kenteken opgeschreven en enkele zinnen die ik had onthouden.

- Hij: 'Vieze lafbek.'
- Hij: 'Die camera's houden me echt niet tegen.'
- Hij: 'Je moet wiebelen, moet hier weg, daar zorgen we wel voor.'
- Hij: 'Viezerik.'
- Hij: 'Je bent het laagste van het laagste.'
- Hij: 'We zullen je wel krijgen, vieze lafbek.'
- Hij: 'Hoor je wel wat ik zeg?' Ik: 'Ja.' Hij agressief: 'Wat ja?'
- Ik: 'Ik doe niks verkeerd.' Hij: 'Dat maakt niet uit, je gaat hier weg.'
- Hij: 'Straks duw ik die verfpot door je strot heen.'

Et cetera, want hij zei nog veel meer. De helft dreigende uitingen, de andere helft agressief vernederend.

Hij was van rechts (als je vanuit ons huis naar buiten kijkt, rechts) gekomen en stond met zijn auto voor de stoep voor mijn huis. Tegen de rijrichting in dus. Toen hij weg reed bekeek ik zijn kenteken en schreef deze binnen direct op.

Uiterlijk: kort haar, jaar of dertig. 'Onderklasse'-uiterlijk. Geen baard, of snor. Ik denk paar dagen niet geschoren. Misschien tattoos, maar dat weet ik niet zeker.

Na afloop stond ik te trillen op mijn benen. Tijdens het gescheld was ik bang dat hij uit zijn auto zou komen en me geweld zou aandoen. Ik ben gestopt met het verven van mijn voortuinhekje omdat ik door zijn gedreig dit niet veilig kan doen. Ik wil dat de politie actie onderneemt omdat deze agressie naar mij toe ervoor zorgt dat ik niet veilig ben in de publieke ruimte, zelfs niet in mijn eigen voortuin.

Marthijn Uittenbogaard
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