‘Former Dutch military intelligence (MIVD) agent extorted Dutch govt for EUR 500,000’

UPDATE 2016-08-31: Nu.nl reports that the court of The Hague orders the Dutch government to pay Ibrahim A. EUR 1.1M, of the EUR 5M he demanded as compensation for lost business.

On Friday March 20th 2015, Dutch news paper De Telegraaf published a story about a former agent of the Dutch Military Intelligence & Security Service (MIVD) who threatened to disclose sensitive information unless the Ministry of Defense would pay him off — and the Ministry of Defense paid him EUR 500,000. The person involved is referred to as “I.A.”; a report from 2011 by De Telegraaf mentioned that the MIVD referred to him as a “Windhond” (which translates to “greyhound”). According to that same report, I.A. was owner of a construction consortium in Kabul; this would be confirmed by audio tapes possessed by De Telegraaf. It cites I.A.:

I delivered weapons, munition, vehicles. I took care of stamps in passports of the Dutch special forces. This allowed members of the Command Corps [‘Korps Commando Troepen’, MRK], who arrived at Kabul International Airport by military flights, to carry out their shadowy operations in secrecy. Observing and eliminating key figures of the Taliban, that’s what it was about. The rocket launchers, AK-47 machine guns and hand grenades were for that purpose.

Reportedly, the Dutch National Ombudsman and the Dutch Review Committee on the Intelligence and Security Services (CTIVD) have found I.A.’s complaints to be groundless.

Here is a translation of the new article in De Telegraaf (do read it entirely):

‘Former Dutch military intelligence agent extorted Dutch govt’

by Bart Olmer

The Dutch government has let itself be extorted by former Dutch military intelligence agent I.A., who threatened to disclose his secret activities in Afghanistan. That was stated before the court of The Hague by Marc Gazenbeek, director of legal affairs at the Ministry of Defense (MoD).

Out of fear that audio recordings that the ex-agent had made of conversations with MIVD officers would end up out in the open, the government, in a panic, offered I.A. half a million euro of ‘hush money’, says Gazenbeek. “We had no idea what other confidential information he had at his disposal”, according to the highest lawyer of the Ministry of Defense.

Gazenbeek: “The amount of 500.000 euro was intended to ensure the security of our personnel and to exclude the risk that information would be disclosed. He threatened with publicity, made a restless and emotionally unstable impression on us, and we were very worried about that. Our intent was for him to not publicize sensitive information, and thus we were willing to pay him an amount, without substantiation or obligations.”

Mission post

Entrepreneur I.A., a former police officer from the Netherlands who was active in Afghanistan as a contractor, claims that he was deployed as a secret agent in Kabul, and has suffered millions of euro’s of damage because the MIVD left him to his fate in Afghanistan. He built a mission post in Kabul, from which the Dutch special forces operated, and claims to have arranged weapons and munition, and cars with false license plates, including forged passport stamps that the special forces could use to leave Afghanistan.

Former MIVD director Pieter Cobelens denies knowing the I.A. was run as an agent. But MoD lawyer Gazenbeek confirms that I.A. arranged forged passport stamps during the mission in Afghanistan, and cars for special military units. Gazenbeek admits that I.A. is mentioned in a few weakly MIVD reports about the mission in Afghanistan. These were signed by Cobelens as having been seen.

Cobelens confirms that the Dutch special forces carried “local” weapons during the mission in Afghanistan, to not stand out. The court wanted to know by whom these Kalashnikovs were bought.

Cobelens: “You ask me whether I have knowledge about involvement of I.A. in the purchase of weapons in Afghanistan. I will not deny that weapons have been bought. That had to do with self-protection. The weapons had to fit what’s usually seen on the streets. I am precisely aware of the procedure that has been followed, and know with near certainty that I.A. did not buy the weapons, nor was he involved in it.”

Through the court case, in which a number of (former) MIVD officers are heard, I.A. wants to prove that he has been used as an agent, and that the government has a duty of care. The hearings have been ongoing for weeks. Today, an employee of the secret service will testify. I.A. claims millions.

At the height of the conflict with the MoD, he was overpowered in the inner city of The Hague by a special SWAT team. I.A. is currently once again a successful business man abroad.