Former Top Civil Servants Incriminate Demmink
THE HAGUE, 21/06/13 - Two former top civil servants at the justice ministry have made incriminating depositions on child abuse against Joris Demmink, De Volkskrant newspaper reported on Thursday. Demmink was until recently the Secretary-General at the ministry.
The statements, deposited at a notary, come from former prison directors Bart Molenkamp and Jacques van Huet. They concern a working visit to London in May 1992.
During this visit, they said a female staff member of Demmink recounted in a hotel bar, in the presence of several colleagues, that she had to arrange young boys for her boss via the telephone. Demmink was at the time Director-General of Alien Affairs.
"I had and have the impression that she arrived at her admissions to us from a very great sense of outrage,” says the statement by Molenkamp. “As I recall, it was about boys of Thai origin.”
The statement by Van Huet is more extensive. He gives the names of the 11 participants in the trip, including the later Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk. “On one of the evenings, after the meal, the behaviour of (....) Demmink was discussed at the bar. For the civil servants this was the umpteenth story about Demmink’s escapades and special attention for young boys. Many higher civil servants must have known about this. Nobody dared to come out in public about this. This would have been the equivalent of civil service suicide, in my view.”
Four other participants in the trip say in De Volkskrant that they do not know whether Demmink was discussed in England. The staff member herself who is said to have done so cannot now “remember whether Mr Demmink was discussed during the trip.”
This is the first time that staff members of Justice have spoken out on the Demmink question without anonymity. The witness statements were drawn up by a Haarlem notary on 17 May.
Accusations of child abuse have pursued Demmink since the 1990s, but have hitherto come from anonymous or unverifiable sources. Successive justice ministers have backed the former top civil servant and said he was cleared by investigations by the AIVD secret service among others. The Public Prosecutor’s Office (OM) never saw any grounds for prosecution.
In the US, Republican Congressman Chris Smith tried to show via a hearing in Washington last October that the Netherlands covered up for Demmink’s behaviour. There, a Dutchman also gave evidence on being abused by him.
Demmink was until only recently secretary-general at the ministry. He has since become a membr of the Netherlands Helsinki Committee, which helps countries in building up a constitutional state, and with the application of human rights.