One of the best known crime reporters in the Netherlands has been shot and taken to a hospital with serious injuries, police said.
Peter R de Vries was shot in central Amsterdam after making one of his regular appearances on a current affairs television show.
It was an unusually brazen attack on a journalist in the Netherlands.
Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte called the attack shocking and incomprehensible. It was an attack on a courageous journalist and also an attack on the free press that is so critical to our democracy.
Police officers stand guard after Peter R de Vries was shot on Lange Leidsedwarsstraat in Amsterdam on Tuesday. Photograph: EPA/Evert Elzinga
The 64-year-old De Vries is known for his reporting on the Netherlands underworld.
He won an International Emmy in 2008 for a television show he made about the disappearance of US teenager Natalee Holloway while she was on holiday in the Caribbean island of Aruba in 2005.
Three suspects were detained, including the possible shooter, police said. They declined to provide any additional details.
He was seriously wounded and is fighting for his life, Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema said in a televised news conference. He is a national hero to us all. A rare, courageous journalist who tirelessly sought justice.
Police cordoned off the area of the shooting near the downtown Leidseplein square. They were collecting video footage, witness statements and forensic evidence.
Dutch broadcaster RTL said De Vries had just left its studio in downtown Amsterdam when one of five shots hit him in the head.
Amsterdams Parool newspaper published an image of the scene with several people gathered around a person lying on the ground.
De Vries is a celebrity in the Netherlands, as both a frequent commentator on television crime programs and an expert crime reporter with sources in both law enforcement and the underworld.
He is known in the Netherlands for investigative work on many cases, notably following the 1983 kidnapping of beer magnate Freddy Heineken.
De Vries had received threats from the criminal underworld in the past in connection with several cases.
In 2013 Willem Holleeder, the Heineken kidnapper, was convicted of making threats against De Vries. Holleeder is currently serving a life sentence for his involvement in five murders.
In 2019 Ridouan Taghi, currently on trial for murder and drug trafficking, took the unusual step of making a public statement denying reports that he had threatened to have De Vries killed.
De Vries has been acting as a counsellor, but not lawyer, to a state witness identified as Nabil B. testifying in the case against Taghi and his alleged associates.
Nabil B.s previous lawyer was shot and killed on an Amsterdam street in September 2019. Agencies

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