Published On: Sat, May 24th, 2014

Partner former Prime Minister remains a suspect

Court houseWILLEMSTAD - Cicely van der Dijs, the partner of the former Prime Minister of Curaçao, Gerrit Schotte, is still suspected of forgery and money laundering. Van der Dijs was released last Thursday from prison, but remains a suspect. This was announced by the Public Prosecution on Friday.

Schotte (39) and Van der Dijs (36) were arrested on Tuesday on suspicion of forgery and money laundering. At the request of the prosecution, searches were done ​​in Italy. Furthermore, several witnesses were heard in Italy, St. Maarten and Curacao.

Schotte was also questioned by the investigation team last Friday, the OM reports. The former Prime Minister remains in custody. A magistrate will decide on Monday whether he should remain in custody or await his court hearing outside of the prison walls.

The searches in Italy and the hearings in St. Maarten seem to be dealing with previously reported dubious transactions of the Italian businessman Francesco Corallo to Schotte. Corallo owns a casino chain in St. Maarten and was mentioned earlier in the media as a financier of Schotte’s political campaign. Corallo denies this emphatically saying that he only does business with the Van der Dijs family. “My transactions come from a legal company. I pay the Van der Dijs family for services and products. I have never financed Schotte’s political campaigns, but if I did, I don’t see anything wrong with that,” Corallo stated in a recent interview with a local morning newspaper.

Schotte was Prime Minister between 2010 and 2012. In that capacity, he wanted to give Corallo a diplomatic position in Curaçao, but it was never crystallized.

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