On Wednesday, the Public Prosecution Service demanded six years in prison against former member of the Commando Troops (KCT) Sil A. (44) in the court in Arnhem for, among other things, trafficking in cocaine. His lawyer says that the evidence for this, which is mainly based on cracked messages from Sky ECC, is lacking.
The public prosecutor said that A. was also involved in arms trafficking, violation of his official and professional secrecy and the possession of weapons and ammunition without permission. According to the officer, he has damaged his exemplary role as an elite soldier who carried out highly confidential assignments for the Netherlands. According to the Public Prosecution Service, A. has not ‘disclosed his affairs’.
The soldier is said to have acted as an ‘arms broker’. According to the Public Prosecution Service, he brought weapons suppliers, with whom he maintained contact through his position at the KCT, into contact with a criminal. There has been no transaction, but the Public Prosecution Service believes that this does not detract from the criminality. Furthermore, A. kept weapons and explosives at home that he should not have had there.
The research into Sil F. is a result of the 26Lyons research. In that case, Gregory F. (a childhood friend of Sil A.) was sentenced by the court in Amsterdam in March this year to nine years in prison and a confiscation of more than 2.2 million euros for cocaine trafficking. Intercepted communications with Sky ECC telephones have shown that Gregory F. had contact with Sil A.. According to the judiciary, he also shared secret information with him, such as photos and call signs of fellow soldiers and information about exercises, working methods and tactics of the KCT.
It has been suggested in the media that Sil F. has been in contact with Ridouan Taghi through Gregory F., who has been sentenced to life in prison for ordering liquidations. Sil F. has said about this before: ‘I am bothered by the fact that I am linked to Taghi. I don’t know anyone from his organization or him.’
The public prosecutor confirmed this week that contact between Sil A. and Taghi has not been established.
AIVD and MIVD
Sil A. carried out secret assignments for the Dutch state, including in enemy territory. Through his work he had contacts with intelligence services AIVD and MIVD. He also worked with the intelligence services during exercises.
Sil A. has said that, as part of his position, he tested telephones from Sky ECC, among other things, and that he also had contact with his childhood friend Gregory F. via Sky.
Justice disputes that F. had a formal relationship with the intelligence services.
That is incorrect, says Haroon Raza, A.’s lawyer. Raza: It is clear from several witness statements that A. did indeed do things for the services, without there being a formal relationship. Raza had previously asked the court to hear named officials from AIVD and MIVD about this. But the court refused.
According to Raza, it was also made impossible for Sil A. to substantiate his claim that he had been asked by a public prosecutor whether it was possible to liquidate or clandestinely pick up Ridouan Taghi in Dubai.
Evidence from Sky messages
The evidence for the cocaine trade lies solely in the messages sent with Sky. According to lawyer Raza, his client denies having sent messages with those accounts. He says that the location based on cell tower data from telephones that the police used to link A. to those Sky accounts is flawed and that other people known to the police also live near his client. He also states that Sky accounts have regularly been used by multiple people. Moreover, according to Raza, not all messages from the accounts were included in the file.
No information about cocaine or South America was found on any of the phones in Sil’s possession.
Raza believes that the police have not investigated alternative scenarios that would explain certain messages or activities of Sil A..