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Disclaimer: I am not an attorney and I am not your attorney. This blog entry not intended as legal advice. If you need legal help, only consult with a barred attorney. This blog entry is an opinion piece based on my personal experiences as a citizen and is only provided for informational and entertainment purposes. The information below could be wrong or outdated so you must always check with a legal professional who can provide you with the most up-to-date legal information.

It has been brought to my attention that the J. A. ordeal is quickly spinning out of control in a really ugly way. Someone has apparently gone and tagged his house in Berlin. Or so it has been claimed on Twitter. This is escalation plain and simple and must be stopped in its tracks.

Τhe only thing I support and encourage right now is that all of the alleged victims contact the rightful authorities in the Netherlands at Openbaar Ministerie Parket Oost Brabant (Leeghwaterlaan 8, 5223 BA ‘s-Hertogenbosch Phone: 0031 88 699 1800) and Politie Brabant Zuid-Oost (Ruysdaelbaan 35, 5613 DX Eindhoven, Phone: 0031 343 578 844) for the sake of due process in a court of law. J. A.’s PhD supervisor at the University of Eindhoven, dr. prof. Daniel J Bernstein, wrote an article on his cryptology blog lamenting the fact that due process is dead on the internet and vigilantism is king. I disagree, and I believe we should restore due process right now.

In your interactions/correspondence with the above authorities, make sure to mention:
– Wetboek van Strafrecht Artikel 246 (Dutch Criminal Code article 246, sexual intimidation and molestation; involuntary kissing falls under this category)
– Wetboek van Strafrecht Artikel 242 (Dutch Criminal Code article 242, rape; includes all forms of involuntary foreplay, involuntary oral sex, involuntary manual manipulation of the genitals)
– Wetboek van Strafrecht Artikel 300 (Dutch Criminal Code article 300, maltreatment; includes making people use drugs against their will or unbeknown to them)
– Wetboek van Strafrecht Artikel 285 (Dutch Criminal Code article 285, threats; leaving a message on a person’s pillow with a text such as “Don’t make us use extreme measures. Hand it all over.” falls under this category)
– Wetboek van Strafrecht Artikel 141 (Dutch Criminal Code 141, violent assault committed by a group, ie “gangbanging”)
– Wetboek van Strafrecht Artikel 285b 1 (Dutch Criminal Code 285b1, stalking; includes  retaliatory harassment against a woman who has turned down sexual advances, or the cornering of women at a party)
– Wetboek van Strafrecht Artikel 266 (Dutch Criminal Code 266, public insult; making disparaging sexual jokes at work about colleagues falls under this category)
– Wetboek van Strafrecht Artikel 262 (Dutch Criminal Code 262, defamation; making false statements in public about having had sex with someone when you haven’t had sex in order to humiliate them in the presence of others falls under this category)

J. A. is a German resident, but he is also a PhD student in the city of Eindhoven in the Netherlands and hence the Netherlands has jurisdiction in this matter regardless of where in the world the alleged actionable conduct occured. Contrary to what you’ve read on the internet, Dutch law enforcement and prosecutorial authorities are actually extremely accomodating of charges filed by Americans against Dutch citizens over conduct that has occured in another jurisdiction than the Netherlands. Dutch authorities will happily and readily investigate such reports and will spend many years doing so if need be, over the most minor of misdemeanours. They love nothing more than to process charges filed by Americans and are extremely thorough in doing so, to the point of performing 9:00 AM home raids on suspects with 11 officers present to arrest the suspect. The suspect will be detained for at least 3 but up to a maximum of 18 days in isolation during which they will be subjected to daily interrogations until they cave in and cooperate. Repeatedly asking to have one’s attorney present during those interrogations is of no use, unless one agrees to answer the questions asked in the presence of an attorney. During those 3 to 18 days of detention, the suspect is held completely incommunicado, they have no access to media such as internet, TV or newspapers and are only allowed to call the outside world to talk to their attorney and no one else. The detention cells that suspects are held within are sexagonal units that have been designed to make it seem as if the walls are caving in on the suspect to increase their sense of guilt. There are no windows with bars as per the cliche. There are no windows at all and there is no natural sunlight, no ability to see what is going on outside. A thin bar at the top of the back of the cell made of opaque yellow plastic gives a hint of dusk and dawn outside, but this could easily be faked with lamps and one loses one’s sense of time after two days. There is no ability to hear what is happening in nearby cells or to overhear discussions in the hall. One becomes quickly aware of the fact that one is  completely isolated. One can only imagine a space station or submarine being a similarly isolating experience. One is not given or allowed a pen and paper to record anything. Not even during the interrogations. One only has ones own memory one’s disposal to record and remember what is happening, what was asked and what answer was given during interrogations. Food is served twice a day. Everything prepackaged and nothing fresh. Detention in the Netherlands is a very interesting and unforgetable experience for suspects in and of itself.

You on the other hand, as the American accuser reporting someone in the Netherlands, you will be addressed in your own American-English language by Dutch law enforcement who are all too happy to get to practice their English on you and gain valuable experience working on a transnational case such as yours. You can submit your exhibits as-is and  won’t have to pay a dime to translate anything from American English to Dutch (the public prosecutor will do it for you for free) and you will merely be interrogated about your report once by means of teleconference. Discovery in the Netherlands is extremely limited compared to the US and is not intrusive at all, because the suspect is only allowed to ask you 15 questions at the most during an interrogation, whereas the suspect will be asked up to 150 questions or more over many subsequent interrogations. Furthermore, your name as an accuser will never be published anywhere due to Dutch privacy laws, and the accused and his lawyers are obliged by bar rules to keep your identity private. They are not allowed to leak anything to the press or the internet (if they do, there will be additional prosecutions to have the information removed from the internet). That’s it. Contrary to the myths doing the rounds online, there is absolutely nothing intrusive or traumatizing about filing charges in the Netherlands as an American abroad.  In fact, if you as an American have trouble filing a report against someone yourself, there at least one or two legal firms in Amsterdam who have experience filing charges on behalf of Americans against Dutch residents who will gladly assist you with your report. Do not worry about the court being inherently biased against you as a woman or man who engages in kink. American courts might be concervative and biased against kinky lifestyles but Dutch courts aren’t like that at all. In fact, many Dutch judges are themselves BDSM practitioners and experienced sadists in their private lives (I really don’t know about their professional lives and hence can’t speak to that), and will not bat an eye or mind at all that you are too. These judges understand what the refusal to stop when someone uses their safeword means. 😉

So, let’s stop the internet vigilantism spiraling out of control, and let’s bring in the lawyers, the police, the judges and the prosecutors to do what they do best. Let’s prove dr. prof. Daniel J Bernstein wrong and let’s restore due process.