Date of Crime


Netherlands Cees Borsboom June 2000 (Schiedam)

Cees Borsboom was convicted of raping and murdering Nienke Kleiss, a 10-year-old girl.  He was also convicted of the attempted murder of Kleiss's 11-year-old male friend named Maikel.  After being severely beaten, Maikel survived by pretending to be dead.  Borsboom came across the victims and reported the crime to police on his cellphone.  After being arrested for these crimes, Borsboom confessed his responsibility for them to police officers, to a prosecutor, and to the investigative judge.  After a while, Borsboom withdrew his confession, claiming it was coerced by the police.

Borsboom's confession was given in vague terms, without providing specific information and without his defense lawyer being present.  Peter R. de Vries, a Dutch TV journalist, thought the case was fishy and did some investigation. He found that Borsboom did not fit the description given by Maikel, nor did Maikel recognize Borsboom.  De Vries also found that Borsboom did not have time to commit the crime, especially since there was a second witness on the scene right when he called 112 (the Dutch equivalent to 911).

In 2004, another man, Wik Haalmeijer, who got caught for two other child molestation crimes, confessed to the crimes for which Borsboom was convicted.  Further investigation revealed that the DA and the National Forensic Institute had known all along that Borsboom did not commit the crime.  They had performed DNA tests which excluded Borsboom as the perpetrator, but had withheld the test results from Borsboom' defense.  This DNA evidence was matched to Haalmeijer following his confession.  Borsboom was exonerated and released in 2005.  He was also awarded $706,000 for his wrongful conviction and imprisonment.  (JD34 p23) (VDG) (Utrecht Law Review) [10/08]



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