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Dutch News
Many soldiers are Hell’s Angels 3/2/2007
AMSTERDAM – Dozens of soldiers belong to the controversial motorcycle club the Hell’s Angels. The defence ministry is trying to get them to give up their membership. A spokesperson for the ministry confirmed this on Friday in response to a report in the Volkskrant.

The ministry cannot take any legal steps at the moment, the spokesperson said. The only thing to do is wait until a court determines that the Hell’s Angels is a criminal organisation, as the public prosecution department has insisted. The OM is trying to get the Hell’s Angels banned via a civil procedure.

The defence department is currently limiting its efforts to talks between commanders and the soldiers in question. It is not known exactly how many soldiers belong to the organisation. The defence minister finds that membership in the Hell’s Angels damages the reputation of the armed forces.

A 49-year-old marine and Hell’s Angels member from Zwijndrecht has been suspended because he is the subject of a criminal investigation. “He is suspected of having committed a crime,” the spokesperson said.

It emerged two years ago that a number of Dutch soldiers on the Antilles were members of the Caribbean Brothers, a motorcycle club affiliated with the Hell’s Angels. Defence minister at the time Henk Kamp (VVD) said then that “membership in such clubs is not compatible with a military profession.”

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