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NOS News•today, 13:15
The criminal case against the father and son suspected of defrauding millions at pop venue Waterfront in Rotterdam will probably end soon. The case against the father lapses because he has died, there is insufficient evidence against the son. The Public Prosecution Service is calling for acquittal.
Until 2016, the municipality of Rotterdam was defrauded for approximately eight million euros in the affair. The building on Boompjeskade has been rented out from 2010 for parties and concerts. But the tenant stopped paying the rent after a few months, because the property would not be suitable for catering.
The municipality then set aside a lot of money to have the pop stage renovated. The work was performed by the tenant’s father. Billions worth millions were submitted. There was a lot of fraud involved. Some jobs were double billed and other renovations were not done at all.
According to regional broadcaster Rijnmond, they kept this up for four years until an official discovered the fraud. Two officials were fired and an alderman had to resign.
The father died in Turkey in December 2020 from the consequences of corona. He left for that country when the fraud was discovered. If he had still been alive, the OM would have demanded a hefty sentence because he “blatantly defrauded the municipality and the tax and the millions probably ended up in his foreign pockets”, the prosecutor said.
According to the OM, the son must have known about the fraud. “He received a lot of money from his father in his account,” said the officer. Still, the judiciary pleads for acquittal because the investigation has produced “insufficient legal and convincing evidence” that the son was involved in defrauding the municipality and diverting the money.
In two weeks, the court will decide whether she will go along with the son’s acquittal. It is unclear whether the municipality of Rotterdam will ever see the millions again. The Public Prosecution Service does not know where the money has gone.