Skip to comments.Dutch police say daughter of chemical magnate taken
Posted on 09/14/2005 2:27:46 AM PDT by happinesswithoutpeace
AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - Armed men broke into an upscale Amsterdam home and kidnapped the daughter of a millionaire whose fortune came from selling chemicals, including to Iraq in the 1980s, police said Tuesday. Her children were left unharmed.
Police said the gunmen stormed into the home of Claudia Melchers, 37, late Monday and took her away. They said they were treating it as a kidnapping.
Melchers, who runs a catering company, is the daughter of Hans Melchers, who owns Melchemie Holland, which supplied chemicals to Iraq in the 1980s. It was unclear whether the kidnapping was related to the company's business dealings.
The woman's two young children were left in the house in a southern Amsterdam neighborhood, police said. The kidnappers bound and gagged a neighbor who was in the house, and he was later freed by one of the children.
"At this moment we don't know where she is," police commissioner Willem Woelders told Dutch NOS television. "Anybody who has information about where she is should contact us so we can get her home safe."
Melchemie has been at the center of accusations in the Dutch media of illegally supplying banned chemicals to Iraq in 1984, but it has denied intentionally violating export restrictions.
A statement posted on Melchemie's Web site acknowledged overlooking a chemical that could be used for poison gas in an export deal with Iraq but said the company recalled the shipment before it reached its destination.
It called the shipment "a one-time mistake" for which it paid a fine currently equivalent to more than $55,000. In 1989, it supplied chemicals to Iraq that were not under any international bans, the Web statement said.
Melchemie had $76 million in sales in 2002. It is wholly owned by Hans Melchers, who inherited it in 1986. He is one of the country's richest men, with a fortune estimated at $500 million.
Sad but predictable what do ya say, finance quite a large op with ransom like what, millions?
...and the kidnappers want all of it, and shouldn't get a penny. The police better crack this to find out who needs that kind of money. Might be interesting. If it is someone who needs lifes luxuries, life in prison. If its you know who, funding you know what, the world needs to know and the trail followed to the end, then the dutch need to get even more serious.
This isn't going to sit well with the Dutch if it turns out these guys are Muslims.
Sounds like someone didn't want Melchers talking too much.
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