Peter R de Vries Dutch crime reporter dies after shooting

Peter R de Vries had previously received threats from the criminal underworld. Photograph: Remko de Waal/ANP/AFP/Getty Images

The Guardian reported he Dutch crime reporter Peter R de Vries has died just over a week after he was shot in the head in central Amsterdam.

Family announces death of 64-year-old just over a week after attack in Amsterdam

the veteran journalist’s family said in a statement released to local media” Peter fought to the end but was unable to win the battle.”

“He died surrounded by the people who love him. Peter lived by his conviction: ‘On bended knee is no way to be free.’”

The statement continued: “We are proud of him beyond words, and at the same time inconsolable. His family, partner and loved ones want to process his death in peace and urge everyone to respect that.”

De Vries, a household name in the Netherlands, was shot five times – including at least once in the head – at about 7.45pm local time (1845 BST) on 6 July, while on his way to a car park on the Lange Leidsedwarsstraat after leaving a nearby TV studio. He was 64.

According to The Guardian, two suspects were arrested on the A4 motorway soon after the shooting. A 35-year-old Pole identified as Kamil E is suspected of having driven the getaway car, police have said, and a 21-year-old Dutchman, Delano G, is the suspected gunman.

Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte said on Thursday the journalist’s death was “almost impossible to comprehend”, describing De Vries as “dedicated, tenacious, afraid of nothing and no one. Always seeking the truth and standing up for justice. That makes it all the more dramatic that he himself has now fallen victim to a great injustice.”

De Vries became famous for reporting the kidnapping of the millionaire brewer Freddy Heineken in 1983. He had his own TV show for 17 years, working with victims’ families, pursuing unsolved cases and exposing miscarriages of justice.

The journalist, who had recently refused police protection after accepting it in the past following death threats, had since last year been acting as an adviser and confidant to the key prosecution witness against Ridouan Taghi, known as the Netherlands’ most wanted criminal.

Dutch media have reported that the suspected killer of De Vries was a nephew of one of Taghi’s henchmen, while according to Polish media the second suspect is wanted by police in his home country for robbery and theft.

Details of De Vries’s funeral will be announced later, his family said in its statement. RTL Nederland, whose show RTL Boulevard the journalist was recording minutes before the shooting, described his death as “an indescribably great loss”.

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Source: theguardian
Image source: ANP/AFP/Getty Images-theguardian