A former gendarme from the Dendermonde brigade who worked on the Brabant killings, Philippe V—, was called in for questioning on Tuesday evening, RTL Info, VRT and De Standaard reported on Wednesday. Philippe V— is suspected of manipulating the investigation in 1986 and hiding information that could have moved it forward. The current investigating team is describing the investigation as manipulated.
The ex-gendarme’s detention came against the background of the discovery of weapons used by the killers in November 1986 in Ronquières, Hainaut. In the 1980s, Philippe V— was a member of the Delta investigating cell under the direction of Dendermonde investigating magistrate Freddy Troch.
In November 1986, he spearheaded an important discovery of weapons in the Brussels-Charleroi Canal. One year earlier, an identical search had been fruitless.
Philippe V— had always asserted that the search had been done during the course of classic police work, but in 2013, a forensic investigation showed that the weapons in question had been thrown into the canal only a few days before they were found. This strengthened the conviction of the investigating judge and the investigating team that the evidence had been manipulated.
Two investigating commissions and three decades of searches later, the perpetrators of the wave of holdups and murders that claimed 28 lives between 1982 and 1985, including children, have still not been identified, nor has their motive been determined.