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Thursday, 9 December, 1999, 17:28 GMT
School shooting suspect's family arrested

Students returned to the school on Wednesday


Dutch police have arrested the father and sister of a teenager accused of opening fire on classmates.

Investigators said they were being held on suspicion of aiding and abetting the crime. Police also seized a weapon and ammunition in a raid on the family's home.

The 17-year old student remains in custody, charged with attempted murder and attempted manslaughter.

All three are due to appear in court on Friday. They have not been named because of Dutch privacy laws.



The shooting happened on Tuesday at De Leijgraaf school, in the southern Dutch town of Veghel, about 100km (60 miles) south of Amsterdam.

Four students and a teacher were wounded when 10 shots were fired in a lobby and a computer room.

One 19-year-old remains in a critical condition in hospital, following surgery for two gunshot wounds to the stomach and two wounds to a leg.

Another student is also in a critical condition. The others are described as stable with less serious wounds.

Before Thursday's arrests, Dutch authorities had said that the father, 35, drove the suspect to the school just before the shooting.

They said he waited outside in the family's Mercedes sedan, then drove his son to the police station, where the boy surrendered.

Romance theory

The injured 19-year-old was the suspect's target, the victim's brother has said. He also said the incident was the result of a feud between the two families - who are both of Turkish origin.


Students were said to have panicked
He said they had squabbled over a romance between the suspect's 15-year-old sister and the victim.

The victim's brother told reporters that his family had feared an attack for months.

He said they had sought police protection from the suspect in August, and then again the night before the shooting.

He added that his brother had also called a police hotline minutes before the shooting, because he feared he was about to be attacked.

Police spokeswoman Gerda Preusting confirmed that police protection had been requested but turned down because there were insufficient grounds to justify it.

She also confirmed that an emergency call had been made just before the shooting, but said the gunfire began before officers could reach the scene.

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See also:
08 Dec 99 |  Europe
Dutch student on attempted murder charge

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