Second reply to your invitation, 12 March 2022
Dear members of the Hendriks Committee
In an earlier letter, you invited us to discuss the matter with your committee. In our response of 29 October 2021, we indicated that we would first wait for the motion calling for a truly independent investigation. We also indicated that we would reconsider your invitation in the unlikely event that the motion was rejected.
In reconsidering your request, we have realised that for victims of organised sadistic abuse (hereafter referred to as victims or survivors) every step to the outside world ('talking') is a balancing act between the safety risks on the one hand and the chance that something good will come out of it on the other hand. After all, as you will know, survivors tell of horrific revenge killings by the perpetrator network when they come forward. Considering the risks and opportunities, this leads us to the following considerations with regard to your Hendriks Committee:
1. Your committee is subject to Justice
However, for decades now, victims have also been reporting abuse by senior Ministry of Justice officials. In six letters to the Lower House, we have argued extensively time and again that the positioning of the commission under the Justice Department is experienced as very unsafe.
After persistent requests, Minister Grapperhaus agreed in December 2021 not to store the reports of the interviews with victims in the archives of the Justice Department. Of course, this does not alter the fact that the reports will have passed through many judicial hands by then. Meanwhile, this concerns only one aspect of the insecurity that victims experience in a committee under this Ministry. For more information on our position, the letters from our group of practitioners are available at this website under "Government and Justice".
2. Your Commission refuses to involve interest groups in the selection of new commissioners
Urgent requests from interest groups for victims of organised sadistic abuse to be involved in the selection of new committee members were ignored. On the contrary, the influence of the judiciary in the committee was increased by the appointment of Daniëlle Lako, secretarial support from the judiciary, and Hanneke Schönberger, senior researcher. With regard to the latter, your committee states that she has only been working for Justice and Security since her appointment to the committee. This is incorrect. Her LinkedIn profile says she was Senior Inspector at the Inspectorate of Justice and Security from 2019 to 2020, see Annex .
3. Extremely questionable choice of Hendriks as chairman - incomprehensible statements about perpetrators
Your committee is not listening to the urgent appeal by interest groups to replace the chairman, Mr Hendriks. The interest groups make this appeal for several reasons, but also because of his plea to use childporno images for scientific research into relapse among perpetrators of paedosexual crimes.
Rightly so wrote Spotlight advocacy group: 'As well as this being ethically way over the line, the most important point for us is that it shows a huge lack of empathy for the victims of sexual abuse.'
In addition, your chairman Mr. Hendriks claims in another Article on incomprehensible grounds, that the ban on the paedophile association Martijn could increase the chance of child abuse. While the explicit goal of the paedophile association was to make the sexual abuse of children socially and legally acceptable.
Such views and statements make Mr. Hendriks downright unfit to be a participant let alone chairman of this committee.
4. Your committee creates LEBZ-like noise from the very beginning
Your committee would investigate the nature and extent in line with the factual findings of Argos (overlap in testimonies). Your chairman Mr. Hendriks creates from the beginning the usual noise that also the LEBZ frequently creates when it comes to organised sadistic abuse. He gives in his first interview Once again, the idea that memories are invented or talked up by therapists is given free rein. Research was to be carried out into its nature and extent. From the point of view of impartial scientific research, it is unacceptable to advance the idea that clients or their therapists make up stories. In line with these statements, your committee will first have extensive discussions with organisations such as the Fictitious Memories Working Group and Pandora's Box (organisations that subscribe to these ideas) and with victims who have later retracted their testimony. Your committee chooses to listen to victims only afterwards, with the ambition of hearing only 10-15 victims and not looking for overlap on concrete facts such as perpetrators and locations. These choices are far from an unbiased way of listening to victims and are in sharp contrast with the working method of Argos.
As for the so-called 'retractors', no doubt there are false reports of ritual abuse. There are also false reports of burglaries, property damage and even false confessions of people who come forward as perpetrators of a committed murder.
However: according to sound scientific standards, research into the nature and scope of organised sadistic abuse should not start with possibly false reports. By way of comparison, research into the occurrence and psychological consequences of unemployment is not started by interviewing the UWV about benefit fraud; at the most, a few words are devoted to the subject at the end of the interview.
In the case of 'false' reports of organised abuse, the matter is even more complicated. Victims have repeatedly stated how, if they revealed something of their horrific existence by reporting it, they were severely tortured by the perpetrator's network. It is known that victims of 'only' sexual abuse in the family very often keep their mouths shut for fear of being rejected from the family or the family splitting up. And some of those who do speak, succumb to pressure from family members or withdraw their accusations for fear of the consequences in the family sphere. If for many of us the fear of exclusion from our social circle is enough to keep quiet about abuse or injustice, how can we expect survivors of ritual abuse to maintain their testimony under the pressure of torture? Added to this is the fact that many clients with created DIS have an 'outer personality part' that has no conscious memories of the abuse, and is 'just' missing huge chunks of time. When the personality system is in great fear, the person part is pushed to the front, which can then deny all the atrocities with great conviction.
How does the commission take these facts into account when hearing retractors?
5. Commission does not make a case for investigating scope
Your committee is not going to investigate the extent. That is precisely what is essential. If there is no insight into the extent, and if there is no insight in advance into positions within the judiciary where reports may be sabotaged, no real progress can be made in the field of investigation. For reports that are taken seriously by 'ordinary' police officers may then be sabotaged by the higher levels. In recent decades, there have been quite a few attempts at legal proceedings concerning the abuse of children by high-ranking officials, which seem to have been covered up precisely because of sabotage by those in higher positions.
Minister Grapperhaus removed the scope from the investigation assignment. When, under pressure, this minister promised in the committee meeting of Justice and Security to have the committee investigate this, your committee did not seize the opportunity to include the scope in the investigation. In doing so, you relied on the opinion of the WODC.
Although you are not investigating the extent, your committee does have the task of setting up a hotline. If there is no insight into the extent and possible involvement of officials of the judiciary and police, this could lead to a reporting point from which the perpetrator network could benefit. After all, it was after the previous commission of enquiry of Justice (1994) that the LEBZ was established (1999), which has worked to the disadvantage of victims (see this item(focus on questions 15 and 16).
6. Dialogue on preconditions for safety of victims is cancelled
On 13 December 2021, your committee had scheduled a meeting with KTGG to discuss ensuring the safety of the victims. On 6 December, you sent a letter to the KTGG. This was a day before the vote in the Lower House on the motion for a truly independent investigation, so it only reached stakeholders other than the KTGG after the vote. Your committee wrote: 'We have looked at the conditions you set for speaking to victims. In particular, the conditions on page 3 of your document 'The hearing of survivors by the Hendriks Committee' are too big a stumbling block. Partly because they cannot be met by us and partly because they concern matters over which we have no influence. (...) In view of the above, we do not consider a meeting on 13 December necessary'. There was no further explanation. The document referred to contained very real conditions for the safety of victims and reporting. It is shocking that your committee refused the planned interview. The fact that a telephone conversation between the chairmen followed later - a far less transparent working method - does not alter this. Conducting a discussion on the safety of victims who want to talk despite all objections should be one of your core tasks. There is no valid reason whatsoever that can justify the cancellation of such a discussion. You have further undermined your credibility as an independent committee.
7. Survivors who are in the picture with our group of practitioners have indicated that they do not dare to speak before this committee under any circumstances.
In short, now that your committee is under the jurisdiction of the judiciary and your committee has shown in its words and actions that it does not have the interests of survivors at heart, we think it is irresponsible to urge survivors to talk to your committee. We will not do so. Since the information we can give as therapists can easily be traced back to our clients, we too will not talk to the committee. However, we invite you to take note of all the public information about satanic ritual abuse that can be found at www.lichtopsrm.com.
We urgently wish that other avenues will be explored that offer opportunities to reveal the truth about organised sadistic abuse. So that law and justice will have the final word in the lives of the victims in our country.
Finally, we have taken note of the interim report by Minister Grapperhaus. In it, he states: 'the interest groups, including the Knowledge Centre for Transgenerational Organised Violence and the Spotlight working group, will be given full access to the report prior to its presentation. The reaction of the interest groups will then be included in full in the report'. Based on this statement, we too, as an interest group of 20 mental health care practitioners, would like to see the report, so that our reaction can be included in its entirety. Earlier, the standing committee of Justice and Security sent our letter - in which we expressed our concerns about the independence of this investigation - to you to be used in this investigation (see here for the letter from the J&V Committee). In order to provide the House of Representatives and society with the fullest possible picture, our response is therefore essential. All the more so since we as therapists, as well as the victims in our care, are unable to speak to you in person due to the, in our opinion, unacceptable limitations of the current set-up of the Committee and the investigation.
We look forward to hearing from you,
On behalf of a group of 20 mental health practitioners,
Ms. Aline Terpstra-van Hijum,
Dear members of the Hendriks Committee,
In response to your emails inviting us to speak, we have the following to say. Incidentally, it strikes us that you are inviting us only months after the start of your committee, a few days after a new motion was announced as a result of our letter, while one of our letters had been handed to you by the J&V committee. But that is beside the point. In response to your invitation, the following.
From the outset, our group of practitioners has taken the position that a committee investigating organised sadistic abuse needs the trust of victims. An investigation organised by the judiciary is completely incompatible with this, as we have extensively substantiated in several letters to the Lower House, which you will be aware of. Minister Grapperhaus has not complied with this. He himself appointed the chairman and the first committee member. In addition, other important preconditions for the trust of victims, which were indicated by advocacy groups, were not followed. I would mention reporting directly to the Lower House instead of via the Ministry and implementing the entire motion: nature AND scope and advice on tracing networks.
Then, without any consultation with victims' representatives, your committee appointed new committee members and supporters, including people from the judiciary. We are not sure how to interpret this: have you not read our letters? You cannot but be aware that for decades, victims have been pointing to names of high-ranking officials of the judiciary and indicating how they have been treated unfairly by the police and the judiciary. How, then, can a commission appointed by the judiciary and which, in addition, hires employees of the judiciary for its investigations, ever inspire confidence in victims? Your credibility and that of the judiciary can no longer be underpinned in this way. Nor will the government win the trust of the people by implementing the motion in this way. Surely you do not despise victims so much that, knowing all this, you deliberately take such decisions, further undermining your own committee?
Be that as it may, we have once again sounded the alarm and sent a fire letter to the entire Lower House in which we ask for your committee to be disbanded and for a new committee to be appointed on the basis of the preconditions set out in the letter. These preconditions are - in addition to complete independence of the judiciary - aimed at guaranteeing the independence and thus gaining the trust of as many victims as possible. Only then will enough victims, including those who talk about the involvement of high-ranking figures, dare to speak up. Only then can a committee achieve results that make a real difference for victims and our constitutional state. After all, a truly independent commission is also necessary to restore trust in the rule of law. We understand that in order to achieve these goals, a new motion will be submitted shortly.
We trust that the majority of our elected representatives are clear-headed and thinking. That a majority understands that if 200 people testify to horrific forms of abuse in an organised context - in which there is regular talk of the involvement of high-ranking figures - this is in all likelihood only the tip of an iceberg. We trust that they will also realise that, in a constitutional state such as ours, an investigative setting in which victims can talk freely is essential. Where courageous victims - who tell of threats of torture and death of loved ones if they talk - dare to take the risk of doing so anyway.
We therefore await this motion with confidence and will not enter into discussion with you before then. In the unlikely event that the motion is rejected, we will reconsider your request. However, it is clear in advance that, given the position of your committee, any discussion will necessarily be limited to generalities.
On behalf of the group of mental health practitioners,
Ms. Aline Terpstra-van Hijum,
From: Danielle Lako <email@example.com>
Subject: Making an appointment
Dear Ms Terpstra, I would like to invite you for an interview with the Hendriks Committee. If you agree, together with Spotlight. Would you please send me your email address? Then I can send a date picker to schedule an appointment.
With kind regards, Danielle Lako, Secretary of the Committee. - This e-mail was sent from the contact form on Light on SRM https://www.lichtopsrm.com