An arsenal of military-grade weapons, ammunition, money and mobile phones was discovered in the Antwerp province by the federal judicial police (FGP), the public prosecutor’s office announced on Tuesday.
In addition to the total of 21 Kalashnikovs that were found, other weapons, mobile phones and a large sum of cash were also seized.
The investigation started on 5 October in France, when two French men were arrested at a toll station in the north of the country. “A sports bag containing four Kalashnikovs, a firearm, ammo and 250 cartridges was found in their car,” spokesperson of the public prosecutor’s office Kristof Aerts told VRT.
De Federale Gerechtelijke Politie Antwerpen heeft tijdens huiszoekingen een wapenarsenaal aangetroffen in Weelde. In het gerechtelijke onderzoek zal onderzocht worden waarvoor de wapens gebruikt werden of zouden worden.@federalepolitie
— Parket Antwerpen (@ParketAntwerpen) October 20, 2020
“The initial findings of the French investigation revealed a clear link with our country, after which the Antwerp Public Prosecutor’s Office and the Federal Judicial Police were notified,” he added.
After searches in several places in the Antwerp municipalities of Weelde and Borgerhout, the weapons were found.
Additionally, cocaine, a cocaine press, a large bag with mobile phones and SIM cards, €148,850 cash and documents containing chemical formulas and container numbers were also found. “An exceptional catch,” said Aerts.
“In the meantime, a judicial investigation has been opened into what is currently called the association of criminals, infringements on the weapons and drugs law, and money laundering,” said Aerts.
Two people with the Dutch nationality – a 38-year-old woman and a 42-year-old man – were also arrested during the raids.
The woman was arrested by the examining magistrate and placed under electronic surveillance. The man was not arrested.
The Brussels Times