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Rapist- Killer Guilty
A CHILD rape and murder
case that horrified Belgium
and shook the country's legal
system has ended in guilty
verdicts against the main accused and his accomplices.
Convicted sex-offender Marc
Dutroux, 47, carried out the attacks while free on parole.
In verdicts broadcast live on
Belgian television, the
12-member jury convicted the
unemployed electrician of kidnapping, imprisoning and raping six girls between 1995 and
1996. Four of the girls died.
He was found guilty of murdering two of them, both teenagers,
and of killing an accomplice,
Bernard Weinstein. The three
bodies were found buried on
The other two girls starved to
death in early 1996 while imprisoned in a basement cell in
Dutroux's house while he served
a short jail term for car theft.
The Jury blamed Dutroux's
former wife and co-defendant.
Michelle Martin, for the deaths
of the two eight-year-old girls,
who were the first to be abducted. Dutroux was found
guilty of kidnapping the pair.
Martin testified that she was
too afraid to go downstairs to
feed the two girls. She was found
guilty of imprisonment leading
The last victims, Sabine
Dardenne, then 12, and Laetitia
Delhez, then 14, were rescued
from the basement two days
after Dutroux was arrested on
August 13, 1996.
Relatives of the victims hailed
the verdicts at the end of a 3
1/2 month trial.
"The verdict is an extraordinary relief," said Jean Lambrecks,
the father of one murdered girl.
Dutroux was out on parole at
the time of the crimes after
serving a prison sentence for
raping young girls in the 1980s.
Revelations of inept police
work following his arrest turned
a nation's grief into outrage at
They searched the house
twice, but failed to find the
secret cells, even though they
About 300,000 people took to
the streets of Brussels in 1996,
in the biggest postwar demonstrations, to protest over delays
and faults in the investigation.
Another accomplice, Michel
Leilevre, was convicted over the
kidnappings and other charges.
The final co-defendant, Michel
Nihoul, was convicted of being
part of a gang that smuggled
drugs and people into Belgium,
but he was acquitted of kidnapping charges.
Dutroux faces up to life in
prison, while Martin and
Lelievre could be jailed for 35
years and Nihoul up to 25 years,
a court spokesman said.
Dutroux admitted to kidnapping and sexually abusing the
two survivors - Ms Dardenne
and Ms Delhez.
Both delivered courageous,
emotional testimony, staring
Dutroux in the eye and asking
him why he did what he did.
Dutroux did not respond.
Adelaide Advertiser (19-6-2004)
Listing Australian Convicted Paedophiles/ Sex Offenders/ Child Killers..
FREE Public Service..
Suspense In Dutroux Case
ARLON, Belgium- Jurors spent a third day
yesterday deliberating the fate of Marc
Dutroux and three co- defendants in a horrific
child rape and murder case. The jury of eight
women and four men was locked away after
the 14- week trial in which they heard testimony
from more than 500 witnesses, including the
only two surviving victims.
Adelaide Advertiser (17-6-2004)
Dutroux Lashes Out At Rape, Murder Trial
ARLON, Belgium; Marc Dutroux has
launched a final tirade at his trial for the rape,
abduction and murder of several girls, denouncing "liars and manipulators" and
insisting he did not act alone. Giving his closing
address before the jury retires to consider its
verdict next week, Belgium's "most hated
man" reprised claims that he was the hapless
fall- guy for a shadowy gang of pedophiles.
The former electrician is on trial along with
his ex-wife and two other men over the abduction and rape in the
mid-1990s of six girls, two
of whom were murdered and two others aged
eight who starved to death. He faces life injail.
Adelaide Advertiser (11-6-2004)
Ex-Wife Accused On Child Sex Killings
ARLON, Belgium: The trial
of child rapist Marc Dutroux
is in its final phase, as lawyers
begin their closing arguments
in a case that shocked
Belgium and the world a decade ago.
After three months of harrowing testimony, the closing
phase of Belgium's "trial of
the century" is expected to
last two or three weeks, before
the Jury retires to consider its
verdict in mid-June.
Lawyers for the families of
two of the victims both called
for Dutroux to be convicted-
but differed on whether he
was part of a wider pedophile
network. The trial opened in
March in the town of Arlon.
Dutroux is charged with the
abduction and rape of six girls
and the murder of two of them
in the mid-1990s. While he has
confessed to some of the kidnappings and rapes, Dutroux
The lawyers of Sabine
Dardenne, who was rescued
after being repeatedly raped
and beaten during the 80 days
she was held in a cell in
Dutroux's basement in 1996
at age 12, took to the flow
Lawyer Celine Parisse
spoke directly to Dutroux's
ex-wife and co-accused,
Michelle Martin, charging
that she bore a heavy responsibility in the ordeal suffered by
Ms Dardenne, now 20, and
survivor Laetitia Delhez.
"Sabine thinks your responsibility is as great as that
of Dutroux", having known
about their suffering but done
nothing to stop it, she said.
Police Could Have Saved Girls, Court Told
POLICE were told of the
whereabouts of one of the
victims of alleged child murderer and pedophile Marc
Dutroux one year before she
was found dead, a court here
Throughout the Dutroux investigation and trial there
have been allegations and rumours of police incompetence
at best, collusion at worst -
charges given further weight
by yesterday's testimony.
The court was told by a
former neighbour of
Dutroux's that she saw one of
the victims, eight-year-old
Melissa Russo, outside
Dutroux's house in
Marcinelle, near the town of
Charleroi, in August 1995,
seven weeks after she had
She immediately contacted
the police station at Grace-
Hollogne, near Liege in eastern Belgium, which was
co-ordinating the hunt for
Melissa and her friend Julie
Lejuene, also aged eight. Both
had vanished on June 34. "I
think that Melissa is at Marc
Dutroux's house. I am not
certain but I think it is her,"
Beatrice Luyckafasseel told
the court she remembered
telling the police. Melissa, she
said, was with Michelle Martin, at the time Dutroux's wife.
"The person who answered
the phone replied that the
necessary steps would be
taken straight away," she told
the court, which is trying
Dutroux, Martin, Michel
Leiievre, described as
Dutroux's right-hand man,
and former businessman
A year later, the bodies of
the two girls were found
buried in the garden of another house owned by
Dutroux. They allegedly
starved to death during their
long imprisonment in a cellar
at the house in Marcinelle.
Ms Luyckafasseel, who lived
right next to Dutroux's house,
said the police never got back
Dutroux faces life imprisonment on charges of rape, kidnapping and murder.
Adelaide Advertiser (1-5-2004)
Charges Set Out In Child Sex Kidnaps
PROSECUTORS set out
charges against Marc Dutroux
and his co-defendants yesterday
on the second day of trial in a
child-sex and murder case
which has horrified Belgians.
The 12-strong jury selected on
Monday will hear murder, rape
and kidnapping allegations dating
back to the mid-1990s,
Court spokesman Nico Snelders
said opening remarks would be
made by prosecutor Michel
Bourlet and by Dutroux's defence
team as well as lawyers for the
three co-defendants, who include
Dutroux's ex-wife. Dutroux and
the others are scheduled to enter
their pleas today.
Investigators have spent eight
years preparing the trial against
Dutroux and the others who were
arrested in 1996. The case focuses
on six girls who the prosecution
says were randomly snatched
from streets around Belgium, held
prisoner in Dutroux's homes near
the city of Charleroi and subjected
to repeated sexual abuse.
Four died - including two eight-
year-old schoolmates believed to
have starved to death while imprisoned in a basement cell under
Dutroux's home when the convicted rapist went to jail for car
theft in 1995.
Although two of the young girls
were rescued by police, the case
caused public outcry after revelations of inept police work.
Dutroux's lawyer Ronny
Baudewijn said the defence would
argue that Dutroux was only a
small part of a criminal network
that had links to Belgian law enforcement.
Dutroux made similar allegations in a letter sent to the
Belgian media yesterday when he
said co-defendant Michel Nihoul
- a small-time Brussels businessman with fraud convictions - was
an underworld linchpin.
Nihoul, 62, faces charges of kidnapping Laetitia Delhez, one of
the rescued girls, who was 14 at
the time. He denies involvement.
Besides Dutroux and Nihoul, in
the dock are Dutroux's ex-wife,
Michelle Martin, 44, who is accused of
conspiracy in the kidnapping, and a friend Michel Lelievre,
32, who faces various charges of
kidnapping, rape and possession
Adelaide Advertiser (3-3-2004)
Kidnapped Girl Tells Of Her 80 days In Hellhole
Pic- Marc Dutroux
BRUSSELS: Seven years after
being kidnapped, caged and raped
by Belgium's most notorious
pedophile, Sabine Dardenne has
told her story for the first time
Ms Dardenne, who was 12 when
she was taken by Marc Dutroux in
1996, said she had been chained by
the neck to a bed and brainwashed
as she was held for 80 days in a
house in the country's south
Ms Dardenne, 19, whose plight
made world headlines, said she
was kidnapped by Dutroux while
riding to school on her bike near the south-western town of Tournai.
"He chained me to the bed by
my neck," she said. "I stayed there
two or three days."
Ms Dardenne was then moved
to Dutroux's cellar, where he had
built a secret compartment.
"There were some pallets and a
mattress on the floor and a bare
light bulb," she said, adding she
was fed on "cold tins of meatballs
in tomato sauce" and "bread that
went, mouldy after two or three
Dutroux managed to persuade
the 12-year-old that he was protecting her from some greater harm.
"He made himself out to be a
nice man who had saved my life.
saying that someone else was trying to kill me or capture me." she
said. "Someone powerful who
wanted to harm me, and who
wanted money from my parents.
In this sense he was my friend, my
But if she disobeyed him, Ms
Dardenne said Dutroux
threatened he would "hand me
over to some gang or other that
he knew and that the person he'd
give me to would torture me and
kill me after making me suffer".
Dutroux is widely believed by
the public to have acted on behalf
of a high-level pedophile network
rumoured to have included senior
politicians and judges.
Adelaide Advertiser (26-2-2003)
Protests Over Paedophile Escape
Demonstrations have been taking place in Brussels as
demands grow for heads to roll over the escape of a notorious
paedophile and alleged serial killer.
Marc Dutroux was recaptured after three and a half hours
on the run on Thursday. He was caught on foot less
than 10km south-west of the town where he had escaped.
Teh convicted paedophile had overpowered his guard at the towns' law court,
where he was examining papers relating to his impending trial for the kidap
and murder of several children.
Organisers of the public protests on Friday said the police chief
Willy Derrider was more responsible for the escape than the
justice and interior ministers who have both already resigned over the incident.
Mass demonstrations have also been called throughout the weekend
as the preesure mounts on Prime Minister Jean-Luc Dehaene for his entire
government to step down.
The opposition is also planning a vote of
no confidence next week.
The Belgian public has already proven
that it can turn out in force on this issue.
Public anger over the handling
of Marc Dutroux's case bought a quarter of a million people on to the streets
of Brussels in October 1996 in the so-called 'White March'.
An official report by the Belgian parliament exonerated police officers
of protecting Dutroux directly,
but said the investigation into his activites was handled
so badly that, in effect, he enjoyed "indirect protection".
BBC News (24-4-1998)
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