Family of missing Achill man attend Dutch hearing

The family of missing Achill man James P (JP ) Grealis will find out in just under four weeks if they have been successful in their long campaign to have an investigation into his disappearance in the Netherlands reopened.

The family travelled to the Netherlands this week to attend and give evidence before a court of appeal.

Mr Grealis disappeared in the Dutch town of Breda in October 2008.

The investigation into his death was officially closed in July 2012.

Legal representative for the family, Yvonne Van Der Hut, explained that the district attorney had concluded there was insufficient evidence to suggest a crime was committed in relation to Mr Grealis’ disappearance.

However the family dispute this. “We think the investigation of the police wasn’t sufficient to hold that standpoint,” said Ms Van Der Hut.

Three judges of the Court of Appeal in the Netherlands are now to review the case and will make their decision in four weeks’ time.

Mr Grealis’ sister, Helen, said the family has been in “constant battle” with the Dutch authorities over what they claim was an unsatisfactory investigation into Mr Grealis’ disappearance.

They demonstrated outside the Dutch Embassy in Dublin in March 2012 and marched to Leinster House to highlight their concerns.

All of their efforts were unsuccessful and she said the family were left with “no remaining options other than to go before the courts”.

The Court of Appeal will assess if the investigation was sufficient and exhaustive and examine if there are reasons to investigate the matter further.

The court will also review the decision by the district attorney in relation to the disappearance.

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