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Belgian arrested 30 years after companion's disappearance

By AFP

May 2, 2024 10:24 PM


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A 78-year-old Belgian man has been arrested on suspicion of murdering his companion 30 years ago after excavation work turned up human remains in a garden, prosecutors said.

The suspect, named only as Hans D., was arrested this week, charged and fitted with an electronic tracking bracelet.

He was to appear Friday in court in the Belgian city of Ghent for a decision on the period and conditions of his detention.

The cold case was reopened when the remains were discovered last Saturday, as the owner of a home in Sint-Martens-Latem, a village just southwest of Ghent, had workers dig up his garden.

Police rapidly deduced from clues found that the body could be that of a woman, a neighbour who had disappeared in 1994 aged 48 and who had been the companion of the suspect.

Belgian newspaper De Standaard reported that Hans D. had confessed to burying her but had not admitted to killing her.

The man's lawyer, Ashley Bicx, told another newspaper, Het Nieuwsblad, that his client was "fully cooperating" with the investigation. The woman disappeared on November 12, 1994. Hans D., a tradesman in the village, was not under suspicion at the time.

He had told a television reporter in an interview five years later that his companion had suddenly gone missing one evening while he was out shopping at a supermarket then off watching a football game, De Standaard reported.

 


AFP


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