Alien detention of protesters after evacuation of squat ‘Schijnheilig’ was unlawful

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Amsterdam, 1 February 2012 - Today, the Council of State (the highest administrative court in the Netherlands) ruled on appeal that the protester who had been arrested following the clearing of the squat ‘Schijnheilig’ on 5 July 2011 in Amsterdam, should not have been placed in alien detention. According to the Council of State, there was no authority for (administrative) detention and custody. During the evacuation of the squat, there were no grounds to assume that the protester in question was an illegal alien. In addition, it is common knowledge that protesters that participate in action of this kind, for reasons of their own, sometimes refuse to reveal their identity. According to the Council of State, that is insufficient grounds upon which to base the assumption that they are illegal aliens.

Corrien Ullersma and Edward van Kempen, who represented the protester, point to the far-reaching consequences of this verdict. "The policy of the mayor, the police and the public prosecutor's office of placing protesters who refuse to reveal their identity in alien detention , can be binned", according to Ullersma. "That is an important breakthrough".

Read the verdict here (in Dutch).

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