Sex-crimes suspect facing six years of imprisonment

PHILIPSBURG--In his closing speech the Prosecutor formulated a six-year demand against a sixty-year-old man charged with ten alleged crimes, among them the sexual abuse of minor children and the possession of child pornography.
He also called for the execution of a three-month suspended sentence.
  The Court will give its decision in this case and in the case of co-defendant and former police officer J.V.G. on February 13.
  Suspect C.K. was arrested on July 6, 2018. He is suspected of the possession of child pornography and of having committed lewd acts with his then-six-year-old daughter and with two other minor girls between December 2015 and December 2017.
  Together with the former police officer, K. is also suspected of fencing of gemstones and diamonds allegedly belonging to Helena’s Jewellers, in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, between September and November 2017. The jewels had a value of US $2.5 million, according to the National Detectives.
  Both men are also suspected of bribery in which K. allegedly provided the former police officer with airline tickets, monetary donations and other gifts in exchange for information about a criminal case against him pertaining to mistreatment of a person with the use of a Taser gun. This offence was allegedly committed between March 2015 and March 2018.
  The Prosecutor’s Office is holding both suspects also responsible for forgery in antedating an official police report and of providing K. with information from a current criminal investigation against him between January and March 15, 2018.
  The Prosecutor said K. had deliberately persuaded his co-defendant, who was a police officer, to misbehave. “Crimes like these undermine the legal order,” the Prosecutor said.
  The Prosecution dropped the illegal-weapon charge, as no bottles were found during a search at the defendant’s home.
  The Prosecutor said a mobile phone found in a bedside table in the suspect’s bedroom, on which incriminating material of a sexual nature was uncovered, formed a relevant part of the evidence. The phone was found during a search of K.’s home on December 14, 2017.
  The defendant claimed the material, among which were videos, could also have belonged to his employees, as he held office at his home and “at least” six co-workers would also have had access to his computer network and mobile phones.
  The Prosecutor’s Office found the defendant guilty of the possession and distribution of child pornography. “His intention was for me to help him do it. He wanted me to recruit for him to do the child pornography. … He wanted to have sex with a minor but he also wanted me to do it. … When I got to know him, I did not bring my daughter any more by his house,” one witness told the Investigating Judge, according to the Prosecutor.
  The Prosecutor said the suspect’s preference for underaged children was evident in the 132 pages of WhatsApp conversations that were presented as evidence. “The suspect was preoccupied with paedophilia to an almost extreme degree,” he said.
  “I don’t make any excuses. … I just love incest and young girls,” the defendant allegedly said in one of the WhatsApp conversations.
Fairy-tales and fables
  The Prosecutor said there was insufficient evidence to convict the defendant of having had sexual intercourse with two minor girls of approximately 12 and 14 years in 2015.
  Although the Prosecution believes the defendant had committed lewd acts with minor girls, it could not be ascertained whether the girls were younger than 16 years because the identity of the two girls could not be established.
  Several child-pornographic photographs that were found in the suspect’s telephone were images of the suspect’s daughter, who was then six years old, the Prosecutor said. The photos presumably were made in the defendant’s bedroom, which was provided with a camera installation aimed at the bed.
  In pursuit of even more extreme forms of sex, the defendant has seriously exceeded crucial boundaries, according to the Prosecutor’s Office. He abused his own daughter and the distribution of child porn and the exchange of ideas about abuse were examples of the suspect’s “perverse interest in sexual abuse,” the Prosecutor said.
  He dismissed the defendant’s statement that he had distributed the sexual material to show his indignation, or that others were out to bother him, or that a mysterious hacker had planted all the evidence in his IT-system.
  “Fairy-tales and fables, but of the bad kind,” the Prosecutor said. He said this was illustrative of the defendant’s “worrisome” lack of self-insight and total lack of empathy for the consequences of his behaviour on other people.
  K. categorically denied all charges. He only confessed to the possession of 197 grams of cocaine on December 14, 2017, which he said he used for pain relief, but denied that the 36 bottles found at his home were Molotov cocktails. He also denied he had mistreated a man with the use of electricity wiring in October/November 2017.
  During his trial, K. repeatedly stated that the allegations brought against him were “grave fabrications,” “preposterous” and “absolute nonsense.” He also claimed he was “absolutely not” interested in minor children.
  Attorney-at-law Shaira Bommel called for her client’s acquittal of the distribution of child-pornography for lack of evidence and due to the unreliability of witnesses. She claimed the case against her client was based on bias. His charisma would have worked against him, the lawyer said.
  Bommel contested that the phone in which the pornographic material was found belonged to K. She also questioned the origin of the WhatsApp conversations. “My client has nothing to hide. He provided investigators with the code to his phone because he had nothing to fear,” said Bommel.
  The lawyer said it was “incomprehensible” that her client was charged with abusing his daughter. Bommel said there was no evidence, as this case was only built on “guesswork.”
  According to the defence, her client should be fully acquitted of the fencing of diamonds. She said the only diamond found at K’s house concerned a diamond which had belonged to an engagement ring.
  The defence also found no proof that K. had mistreated his landlord, as no electricity wiring was found, and said the bribery charges were a “bizarre story,” and “absolute nonsense.” Bommel also said she did not understand why her client was charged with forgery.
  She said her client could only be convicted of the possession of a “small quantity” of child pornography and of the possession of cocaine, for which a suspended sentence with community service should be a suitable punishment.
The Daily Herald

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