THE HAGUE: Five Dutch police officers have been suspended from their duties after a man from the Caribbean island of Aruba died of suffocation following his arrest at a music festival, prosecutors said Wednesday.
The death of Mitch Henriquez, 42, who was on holiday visiting relatives in the Netherlands, on Sunday sparked two nights of anti-police protests in The Hague. Initial autopsy results showed that Henriquez most likely died of suffocation and that there was no evidence of drugs or excessive alcohol in his system.
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"It is likely that the suffocation was a result of the police intervention," prosecutor Kitty Nooy told journalists in The Hague. The five involved with his arrest have been suspended and are being treated as suspects, the public prosecutor's office said.
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Police said they arrested Henriquez at a music festival on Saturday after he claimed to have a weapon. He resisted arrest and became unwell on the way to the police station, they said. But mobile phone footage of the arrest emerged showing several police officers restraining and sitting on Henriquez, before his limp body was put in a police vehicle.
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