BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific Russian Polish Albanian Greek Czech Ukrainian Serbian Turkish Romanian
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Europe  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS
Wednesday, 4 September, 2002, 16:07 GMT 17:07 UK
Fortuyn suspect's girlfriend arrested
Police arresting Volkert van der Graaf
The woman's boyfriend is Volkert van der Graaf
The girlfriend of the man charged with killing Dutch populist leader Pim Fortuyn has been arrested, police say.

Petra Lievense is being questioned about materials found at her home which could have been used to make a bomb, according to prosecutors. They say she appeared to have been planning a "serious offence".


She was in possession of chemicals that could be used to start a fire or cause an explosion and was apparently planning a serious offence

Prosecution spokesman
She is not said to be suspected of involvement in the murder of Mr Fortuyn, who was shot dead in a car park in May.

Her boyfriend, animal rights activist Volkert van der Graaf, was arrested shortly after the shooting.

He has been on hunger strike in custody for the past two months to protest against his detention conditions.

Mr Fortuyn's party, the LPF, which supports anti-immigration policies, is now part of the Netherlands' coalition government.

Pim Fortuyn
Fortuyn was shot dead in a car park in May
Authorities took nearly four months to arrest Ms Lievense because they had been waiting for results from forensic testing, a prosecution spokesman said.

The tests confirmed that chemicals, laboratory equipment and a kitchen timer found during searches of the couple's home east of Amsterdam, where they lived with their two-year-old daughter, could be used to make an improvised explosive device, he said.

"She was detained because she was in possession of chemicals that could be used to start a fire or cause an explosion and was apparently planning a serious offence," a prosecution spokesman said.

Prosecutors have until Friday to file charges or release her.

Ms Lievense had already been questioned by police in May after Mr Van der Graaf was arrested over Mr Fortuyn's murder.

Mr Van der Graaf's lawyers say his girlfriend's arrest is simply a ploy by the authorities designed to put pressure on him.


Key stories

Background

FACTFILE

TALKING POINT
See also:

09 Aug 02 | Europe
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Europe stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Europe stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes