May 19, 2022

Former Curacao PM appeals corruption conviction and sentence

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schotte_van-der-dijs4By Curacao Chronicle From Caribbean News Now

WILLEMSTAD, Curacao — As expected, the former prime minister of Curacao, Gerrit Schotte, and his partner Cicely van der Dijs have appealed against the convictions and sentences handed down against them on Friday morning for forgery, corruption and money laundering.

The judge sentenced Schotte to three years in jail. He was also deprived of the right to stand for elected office for five years. The court indicated that Schotte by his actions seriously damaged the trust of citizens in an honest government.

Van der Dijs was sentenced to 18 months in prison, of which nine is suspended.

Schotte and his lawyer, Eldon Sulvaran, immediately indicated to the court their decision to appeal. In an appeal, the verdict is usually suspended to await the outcome of the appeal.

The Public Prosecution (OM) indicated on Friday morning that they will await the decision of the court of appeals, when three judges will examine whether the evidence presented to the judge in the court of first instance was proven and they will also examine the sentencing.

According to an expert, this decision is a gamble, because the court of appeals can also increase the sentence.

In an interview right after the court’s decision, Schotte said that voters will still be able to vote for him as the leader of his party in the elections later this year, because the prohibition against him running for elected office is also suspended.

IMAGE: Gerrit Schotte (L) and Cicely van der Dijs

For more on this story go to: http://www.caribbeannewsnow.com/headline-Former-Curacao-PM-appeals-corruption-conviction-and-sentence-29644.html

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