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14 April 2010     Court of Arnhem
Acquittal in case Lucy de Berk

Lucia’s TIME LINE

4 September 2001

8.00 hrs Nurse approaches superior – she is concerned about frequency of resuscitations during Lucia's shifts. It just cannot be coincidence…

16.00 hrs Contact with the police.

5 September 2001

Police begin interviewing nursing staff and doctors.

17 September 2001

Director Smits of Juliana Children's Hospital and Red Cross Hospital files official complaint with the police – 5 murders and 5 attempted murders.

13 December 2001

Lucia is arrested and remanded in custody.

24 March 2003

Court in the Hague sentences Lucia to life imprisonment for 5 murders and 2 attempted murders.

18 June 2004

High Court of the Hague sentences Lucia to life on 7 counts of murder and 3 of attempted murder. Lucia also gets TBS (is made a ward of court with mandatory psychotherapy) – an instrument aimed at rehabilitation.

14 March 2006

Court of Appeal refers case back to the Court of Amsterdam – judgement is upheld but point in law must be clarified – is TBS compatible with a life sentence?

13 June 2006

Court of Amsterdam rules TBS is incompatible with life imprisonment. Amends sentence to just life.

27 July 2006

Case is submitted to the Buruma Committee (assesses merit of referring case to Committee Evaluation Closed Criminal Cases – CEAS).

18 October 2006

Board of Procurators General accepts Buruma Committee recommendation of further investigation in the case of Lucia de B. The Grimbergen triumvirate is set up to carry out the brief. It consists of M.S. Groenhuijsen (Professor of Criminal Law at Tilburg University), P. Vogelzang LL.M (former head of the Utrecht District police and other offices), J.W.M. Grimbergen LL.M (Assistant Procurator General with the Arnhem Office of the Public Prosecutor, Chairman).

29 October 2007

Grimbergen Report recommends that Public Prosecutors initiate a request for judicial review and requests further investigation.

29 October 2007

Public Prosecutor forwards request the same day to the Supreme Court Procurator General, who promises a response in two to three weeks.

2 November 2007

Petition to reopen Lucia's case handed to the Dutch Minister of Justice and his Undersecretary.

13 December 2007

Undersecretary Albayrak denies request temporarily to suspend Lucia's detention (on grounds of health).

14 December 2007

Petition appears as advertisement in the NRC newspaper.

5 January 2008

Light for Lucia torch procession at Nieuwersluis prison.

14 January 2008

Undersecretary of Justice informs Parliament of her refusal temporarily to suspend Lucia's detention.

15 January 2008

Lucia and her lawyer Ton Visser appeal the Undersecretary of Justice's decision.

7 February 2008

Theatre play "Lucy, a monster trial" premieres in Amsterdam.

2 April 2008

Attorney General of the Supreme Court, G. Knigge LL.M presents the Board of Procurators General his enquiry, which draws the conclusion that the argumentation to prove digoxin poisoning is untenable.

The Minister of Justice grants Lucia temporary suspension of her sentence for three months. In the morning Lucia leaves Nieuwersluis prison – after more than six years of detention.

17 June 2008

Attorney General Knigge presents his official demand for revision to the Supreme Court.

7 October 2008

The Supreme Court decides to reopen Lucia's case and refers it to the Court in Arnhem.

26 Januari 2009

Police searches the house of a niece of Lucia on an anonymous tip for diary fragments that were never missing. Nothing found.

5 February 2009

At the Court in Arnhem the Public Prosecutor requests a full investigation. Lucia's lawyer Franken doubts the purpose of this.

19 February 2009

Court in Arnhem orders a limited investigation.

9 December 2009

The new rapports confirm that digoxine poisoning is highly unlikely. The Public Prosecutor rests its case.

17 March 2010

The Court in Arnhem hears the case. Lucia expected to be present. Dutch national television covers the trial.

14 April 2010

Final verdict in the case of Lucia de Berk: Acquitted

Lucia bij de zee


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