The police arrested two people last night for the attack on the Groningen journalist Willem Groeneveld. The men are suspected of arson and attempted murder after they threw burning material into and against the journalist’s home in the night of Wednesday 18 to Thursday 19 August. That reports the police. No one was injured in the incident.
The suspects are a 32-year-old man and a 31-year-old man, both from Groningen. The police traced the suspects through a criminal investigation and the tips that came in after sharing the images. “Not only did the police take this case highly, we see that people have contributed a lot,” says district chief Frank Smilda. “The images have been shared en masse and the tips have helped to ensure that the suspects could be arrested so quickly.”
The police and the Public Prosecution Service (OM) launched an extensive investigation. They immediately conducted a neighborhood investigation, and yesterday afternoon published a search message with images of the suspects. Those images have since been removed from Politie.nl.
The police also ask everyone to delete the shared images. “In this way we can conduct the follow-up investigation as carefully as possible”, the site reads. The investigation continues and the suspects will be questioned. It is not yet known what the reason was. This must be apparent from the follow-up investigation.
The police and the Public Prosecution Service say they will act harshly if journalists are mistreated or attacked. Chief officer Diederik Greive: “The Netherlands is a free constitutional state in which journalists should be able to do their job and not be restricted by people who threaten them or, even worse, use violence against them.”
In the event of such incidents, action is taken in accordance with the agreements laid down in the PersSafe protocol. The investigation and prosecution of suspects in criminal offenses against journalists are given high priority. Suspects are brought to justice more quickly. The sentence for aggression and violence against journalists is doubled by the Public Prosecution Service.
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