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Taxi driver sentenced in death of customer

DutchAmsterdam.nl — A taxi driver prosecuted in the death of a potential customer has been sentenced to two years in prison.

A judge determined that 44-year-old Rob Sitek died as a result of being attacked at the Leidseplein taxi rank by Sidi Mohamed B. in July 2009.

After a night out Sitek asked B. to quote a price for a trip to Sloten, an Amsterdam suburb. When B. asked for €50 (far too much), Sitek reportedly said ‘Fxxk you.’

NOS news report (in Dutch) on the conviction

A brief scuffled ensued during which B. — formerly a kickboxer in his birth-country Morocco — knocked Sitek full in the face with a left hook.

The blow rendered Sitek unconcious and he subsequently died.

Police officers patrolling Leidseplein witnessed the accident and immediately arrested Sidi Mohamed B.

The taxi driver, who has been pre-arrest for the past 10 months, claimed he was attacked by an ‘aggressive man’ and says he defended himself in a reflex.

The Amsterdam Court says that whether Sitek died as a result of the blow or of the fall on the pavement makes no difference. “There is no other cause of death than the fall or the blow,” the judge said. “Both were caused by the suspect.”

Sidi Mohammed B. was convicted of inflicting grievous bodily harm leading to the death of Sitek. The court did acknowledge that the taxi driver did not intent to kill the man.

The Public Prosecutor has asked for a 3-year prison term.
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