Trial of alleged murderers of Dutch journalist De Vries opens

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Trial set to open for two men charged with murder in the murder of Dutch journalist Peter R

THE HAGUE, Netherlands – The trial opens Monday of two men accused of murder in the murder of Dutch criminal journalist Peter R. de Vries, who was shot dead in central Amsterdam, a brazen attack that sent shock waves across the Netherlands.

Dutch police said the suspected gunman was a 21-year-old Dutchman. A 35-year-old Pole is accused of being the driver of the leak. They were both arrested shortly after De Vries was gunned down on July 6 in an Amsterdam street after making one of his regular appearances on a Dutch TV show. He died nine days later.

Monday’s preliminary hearing at Amsterdam District Court will not assess the evidence in the case, but is expected to hear a summary of the investigation to date and possible requests for further investigation from lawyers suspects.

The shooting sparked a wave of grief – thousands of people lined up outside an Amsterdam theater to pay their last respects days after her death – and a conviction in the Netherlands.

Prime Minister Mark Rutte called the shooting “an attack on a courageous journalist and also an attack on the free journalism which is so essential to our democracy, our rule of law, our society”.

De Vries was the Netherlands’ most famous criminal journalist, writing and writing a bestselling book on the 1983 kidnapping of beer mogul Freddy Heineken and campaigning tirelessly to resolve unresolved cases and clear the names of the people wrongly convicted.

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