Defence request for recusal of judges of Dutch Tamil Tiger trial rejected

Oct 04, The Hague: A request by the defence lawyer of the Dutch Tamil Tigers on trial for terror financing, to the panel of judges to recuse has been denied.

The Hague Chamber of Recusal has rejected the defence lawyer Victor Koppe’s challenge to the panel of judges in The Hague hearing the case of five alleged Dutch Tamil Tigers and allowed them to continue, Radio Netherlands reported.

Koppe, who has addressed the court whole day Monday with a nearly 200-page address, has submitted the challenge when the judges refused to allow him to continue.

The lawyer for the Tamil Tiger defendants has argued that the trial was unfair and the judges ignored his request to continue beyond 5 pm.

The prosecutors have demanded sentences ranging from 10 to 16 years for the five ethnic Tamils accused of organizing illegal lotteries and extorting cash from Tamils in the Netherlands with all proceeds going to Sri Lanka’s terrorist group, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), to finance its terrorist war.

The LTTE is a banned outfit in the European Union.

Prosecutors have told The Hague District Court the men, all naturalized Dutch citizens, continued to raise money even after the war ended. They said millions of euros were raised in part to fund suicide attacks.

Koppe, however, says the LTTE members who have carried out numerous suicide attacks in Sri Lanka killing thousands of people, are freedom fighters similar to the Libyan rebels.

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