A now closed coffee shop in Terneuzen and the then director have to pay 11 million euros to the State due to a conviction for trade in soft drugs.

The Court of Appeal of The Hague decided this on Wednesday.

Coffeeshop Checkpoint made huge profits before closing the business in 2009.

Two to three thousand customers came from both home and abroad every day.

The amount that must now be paid to the State is half of the profit that the coffee shop made between 2006 and 2008.

The court took into account the circumstances in which the Zeeland coffee shop could grow into the largest in the country.

Checkpoint was tolerated for years by the municipality of Terneuzen with the knowledge of the Public Prosecution Service (OM).

The State demanded a larger amount of the 22.5 million euros in profit that the coffee shop achieved.

The court did not agree, because the government also obtained income from the operation of the coffee shop.

In addition, the government must have known that those high profits could only be achieved if the coffee shop had more trade in stock than was allowed, according to the court.

Despite these circumstances, the court finds it unacceptable that the coffee shop and the director should be allowed to keep all the money earned through the illegal activities.

That is why half of the profit must be paid to the State.