On the evening of Friday 29 September, the 25-year-old Anne Faber decided to go for a cycling tour, despite the bad weather. She left, from Utrecht, the Netherlands, around 17:00 on her black, old-fashioned model bike. Around 18:15 she sent her boyfriend a Whatsapp, telling him she was in Hollandsche Rading. Around 18:50 she sent him a selfie on the Hilversumsestraatweg / Amsterdamsestraatweg crossing in Baarn. It was clear that by that time, that it was raining. Nothing was heard from her afterwards.
She was reported missing by her family that night. From family, friends and acquaintances, the police understood that Anne Faber had a great sense of responsibility and there were no signals that she might want to disappear for a while. This lead the police to conclude that her disappearance should be investigated.
An APB was put out on 30 September and a special task-force was formed. Detectives tried to build a psychological profile by talking to those who knew Anne Faber, while others checked her telephone records. A search was organised, with police, tracker dogs, military personnel and volunteers. After clothes were found that might have been Anne Faber’s, the search area was widened. Meanwhile, the search for witnesses was continued, and a call went out for leads.
Then, on 9 October, the police arrested a 27-year-old man on suspicion of involvement in the disappearing of Anne Faber. After receiving a concrete lead, a body was found in the forests around the Nulderpad in Zeewolde. Forensic experts established the body was Anne’s. The search of the crime scene was completed on the same evening and the area was cleared. The task force is continuing the investigation.
During a press statement on 12 October Rutger Jeuken, the Public Prosecutor, said that:
“The suspect has been brought before the magistrate today and it was decided that he will remain incarcerated. The man is suspected of involvement in Anne’s disappearance and death. He is currently held with limitations, which means he is not allowed to communicate with the outside world. This means that the Public Prosecutor’s Office and the Police have to be reserved in divulging information about the investigation. The investigation continues with a view to ascertaining what happened exactly.“
Quickly after the news broke that a suspect was apprehended, information leaked out about him: Michael P. already had an extensive criminal record. From his earlier trial, a picture of a very violent, deeply disturbed individual emerges from the court proceedings of one of his trials:
“Suspect has been guilty of nine very serious criminal acts within a short space of time, all of a violent character. He has, completely randomly and impulsively, brutally raped, in the night after Queen’s Day 2010, two under-age girls while threatening them with a imitation weapon. Suspect alternately put his penis in the vagina’s of both girls and the anus of one. Besides which, he has removed a tampon from one of the girls’ vagina and inserted his finger in her vagina.“
The court found him guilty, and sentenced Michael P. to 16 years in prison in 2011,
“especially in view of the serious and gruesome character of the rapes, in combination with the statements made by a witness and fellow suspect that the suspect was proud of the rapes and happy a dream had come true for him.“
However, according to Dutch newspaper BN De Stem, the Public Prosecutor thought the punishment was too high and it challenged the verdict in appeal. In appeal, Michael P. was sentenced to 12 years in prison, but served only six.
After his sentence, he stayed in a forensic psychiatric clinic called Aventurijn in Den Dolder. Here he was supposed to receive treatment, easing his reintegration into society. But as newspaper De Telegraaf reports, he impregnated a fellow patient. Michael P. also had a relationship with a female supervisor.
“It is possible the affair played a role in the liberties P. was given. Since spring, he was able to regularly leave the clinic without trouble. He only had the obligation to report with the clinic. Multiple sources related to the investigation have confirmed to De Telegraaf, the relationships and the, for him, lenient regime.“
In response to these facts, a petition was started, calling for an investigation into the “failing judicial system in the case of Michael P.” and addressed to Prime-Minister Mark Rutte, Minister Blok of the Justice Department and the clinic that treated Michael P. The petition was started by a “mother of three to give the people a voice.” At the time of writing, the petition had been signed almost 201.000 times.
Nu op TPO (autotweet) – Anne Faber: Heel Holland woest op justitie en psychiatrie, dus petitie https://t.co/b2aB6RKBmB
— Bas Paternotte (@baspaternotte) 13 oktober 2017