A suspect in the infamous Brabant Killers case in the 1980s, former policeman Robert Beijer, has reportedly been arrested in Thailand, RTBF reports. Beijer, who has always maintained his innocence, was undergoing cancer treatment in the country.
Belgian authorities are currently performing searches at the former police officer’s home in Pattaya in connection with the Brabant Killers case.
The Brabant Killers are possibly the most important cold case in Belgian history. Suspected far-right extremists and career criminals are thought to have had ties to extremist political movements and criminal gangs. How many played a role in the killings is unknown, though it is suspected that up to 10 people were involved.
Following a chaotic and disorganised official investigation into the group which failed to find any culprits, various theories on the identity of the perpetrators have circulated. Some have alleged the gang's ties to the police, the mafia, far-right extremist groups, or other organisations.
Close to the case
According to RTBF, the suspect was arrested by Thai authorities who discovered during the searches that the suspect had been living illegally in the country. Beijer’s name had repeatedly come up during the investigation into the Brabant killings, but he denies any involvement in the series of robberies and murders.
Beijer, who went by the alias “Bob”, has previously been sentenced to 14 years in prison for the murder of an Antwerp diamond dealer in 1995.
Many people have been suspected of involvement in the Brabant Killers case. Three main suspects, nicknamed “The Killer”, “The Giant”, and “The Old Man” have never been identified. The case remains a mystery to this day, despite various leads. Investigations are still actively underway into the case.
Earlier this month, in a potential lead in the case, Belgian magnet fishers appeared to find an Uzi submachine gun used by the Brabant Killers in a daylight robbery at a Colruyt store in Nivelles in 1983. Photos released by the magnet fisherman appear to confirm the retrieval of the weapon in question.
- Memorial to the victims of the Brabant killers to be erected at Delhaize in Aalst
- Belgium to make time-barring 'very serious' murder and robbery-murder cases impossible
According to information unearthed by VTM crime journalist Faroek Özgünes, the weapon was thrown into the Damme Canal by a garage owner who had received the weapon from a “friendly” police officer who alleged the weapon’s use by the Brabant Killers.
Translation: The federal prosecutor's office is doing everything it can to bring up the truth in the Brabant Killers file. In the meantime, the government has adopted a bill that changes prescription rules so that such facts can no longer be time-barred. Are we obliged to the relatives of 28 victims.
In a comment on Twitter, Belgian Justice Minister Vincent Van Quickenborn said that the Federal Prosecutor’s Office was doing everything it could to “bring out the truth.”