The agents who sent racist messages in a WhatsApp group will not be prosecuted. The Public Prosecution Service (OM) reports on Tuesday that the statements are “reprehensible”, but not punishable, because the chat was closed.
“The law prescribes that such statements are only punishable if they are made in public,” said the OM. Therefore, no criminal prosecution is instituted.
Early last month, it was revealed that officers shared discriminatory messages in their private chat. NRC wrote, inter alia, that citizens with a migration background were referred to as “cancer populations, cunt Africans and pauper immigrants”.
The newspaper had acquired screenshots. The statements were made last year in a chat called the ‘Jan Smit Appgroep’.
The officers were at home during the prosecution’s investigation into the crime. Now that the statements are only internally examined, the agents can return to work. The police said that no sentences were imposed in comparable cases. Other measures may follow.