More than 22 years after the disappearance of Nicky Verstappen on the Brunssummerheide, a decision has been made in the case. The court in Maastricht finds Jos B. guilty of sexually assaulting and kidnapping 11-year-old Nicky Verstappen, resulting in death.
B. (58) is convicted up to 12 years in prison. He also got another six months for the possession of child pornography. The Public Prosecution Service was sentenced to 15 years in prison and TBS with forced nursing demanded. If the court would not impose a hospital order, the Public Prosecution Service asked for eighteen years in prison.
How does the court reach such a verdict? Why has no TBS been imposed and why cannot manslaughter be proven, but is Jos B. held responsible for the death of Nicky Verstappen? We ask three experts.
Why no tbs?
Jos B. refused to participate in research at the Pieter Baan Center. Yet the judge has not imposed a hospital order on him. The judge considers B. completely accountable.
Hjalmar van Marle is professor emeritus of forensic psychiatry. Between 1990 and 1996 he was medical director of the Pieter Baan Center in Utrecht. “It is easy to explain that the court has not imposed a hospital order. A hospital order is only imposed if there is a risk of recidivism”, says Van Marle. “He has not been convicted in recent years.”
The emeritus professor is of the opinion that the court is “relying on the right thing” in not imposing TBS. B. suffers from a pedophilic disorder, the court said. But not every convicted pedophile makes a mistake again. Lonneke Stevens, professor of criminal law in Amsterdam: “With regard to tbs, the Public Prosecution based itself on a kind of general recidivism report, and the court did not agree. I think that is very strong, because general statistics say nothing about individual liability and chances of recidivism”, Stevens said.
You can watch some important moments from the verdict of the three judges here: