Haarlem, Amsterdam (April 24, 2019) BTN — The mayor of Haarlem has closed the clubhouse of the Haarlem Hells Angels motorcycle club and has determined that it must remain closed for at least two years. The Council of State states that on Wednesday.
The Council of State is the highest administrative body for administrative law in the Netherlands.
This means that the mayor will not have to process another request for the reopening of the clubhouse located behind Central Station until next year. The Council of State is of the opinion that the mayor has sufficiently demonstrated that ninety motorcycle club members have committed crimes in the clubhouse in the past. The members were sentenced for this with penalties ranging from one to nine years.
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If the motorcycle club submits a request for reopening in early 2020, it must unambiguously demonstrate that no offenses will be committed in the clubhouse. The ruling is a damper for the Hells Angels. Earlier they successfully opposed the closure of the clubhouse for an indefinite period. The mayor then decided in early 2018 that the building would be locked for at least two years.
The motorcycle club previously wanted to request a reopening. According to the members, there is no longer any chance of criminal activities in the clubhouse. In addition, they believe that the mayor, by not taking a reopening request into consideration, affects the right to association.
The Council of State sees it differently and supports the line of the mayor.