Philanthropist Sywert van Lienden made money from the pandemic using mouth masks he never used

Philanthropist Sywert van Lienden made money from the pandemic using mouth masks he never used
Siwirt van Linden sure his mouth masks were fine, but they never used care.Brunopress Image

Van Lienden founded the nonprofit organization Stichting Hulptroep Alliantie to ensure the Netherlands gets millions of masks quickly. The Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sports eventually ordered 40 million mouth masks through it, De Volkskrant reported Saturday.

But it is evident from the dozens of internal documents, contracts, e-mails, and reports in the newspaper’s possession that Van Linden and his associates had a million big deals running through their private limited companies, and thus earned on them.


The masks could also have been rejected by the Royal Institute of Public Health (RIVM) because they contain graphene (a carbon nanomaterial) and pose, according to the inspector, an ‘unacceptable health risk’. Ultimately, VWS still agreed to buy.

“Graphene has been included in the tests and in the certification of an accredited testing agency,” an internal note reads the conclusion. “This means that the mask meets specific requirements and quality standards and is issued based on VWS guidelines.”


A RIVM spokesperson says the institute “does not endorse” coatings containing nanosilver, copper oxide or graphene as long as they are not proven and investigated into what the added value is, while there may be risks. According to the RIVM, graphene is “not detrimental to identification.”

The Ministry of Health, Care and Sports told De Volkskrant that none of the 40 million mouth masks that Van Linden provided went to healthcare. Still in stock because so much of it has been bought. 100.8 million euros were transferred for 40 million masks.

According to Van Lienden, there’s nothing wrong with his mouth masks. We looked for it with the Department of Health, Welfare, and Sports and testing agencies. The graphene in our masks is not nanotubes but foil bound with plastic. It cannot bear fruit and there is very little it is harmless. It is just a safe product. ”

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