A 27-year-old man from Rotterdam has been given a two-month suspended prison sentence and 70 hours of community service because he was caught on a site with containers belonging to Hutchison Ports ECT Delta in the early morning of November 22, 2022. The prosecutor had demanded a sentence of four months in prison.
Blades of grass
The Rotterdam police judge found that there were four people, two of whom were found in an empty container. The suspect was found in the parking lot. “What were you doing there?” asked the magistrate. “I don’t want to answer that,” said the suspect. The judge thought that was a pity and noted that the suspect was not there ‘to count blades of grass?’
It is forbidden to enter port areas. Since last year, the legislation has increased the penalties for this and the provisions have been expanded.
The suspect is a full-time parcel deliverer in daily life. He lives with his mother and has two small children with his ex-girlfriend.
The public prosecutor says he has to be strict because of the large imports of cocaine in the port and therefore demand four months in prison according to the directive, job and children or not. In addition, the public prosecutor is demanding an area ban for the port to prevent a recurrence.
“I propose to do it completely differently,” said the suspect’s lawyer. Because her client is on the right track with work and two children, whom he actively contributes to raising, she asked for only a suspended prison sentence. Otherwise, the man would lose his job and contact with the children would deteriorate.
The police judge decided that the suspect’s life – apart from the swipe action – is ‘well in order’. Because the suspect has expressed remorse and has not previously been in contact with the authorities, she only imposed a suspended sentence with a probationary period of two years, in addition to community service.
The police judge saw nothing in an area ban. ‘This is usually imposed when the living environment of civilians or victims is at stake, but that is not the case here. Moreover, it is simply an offense to be in the port, so there is no reason to impose an area ban.’
Last year, 241 ejectors of drugs were removed from port areas. In 2021 there were 400. The Public Prosecution Service thinks that this decrease is due to the new eviction law that came into force on January 1, 2022. The maximum possible prison sentence is 1 year.