The emergency services were called on Monday to Saint-Josse-ten-Noode to an unconscious child. At the scene a child, aged six, was discovered suffering from hypothermia and evident malnutrition. His twin sister also required medical attention.
Their mother and stepfather were arrested and charged with torturing minors as a parent or legal guardian.
This was indicated by the Brussels Public Prosecutor’s Office, confirming information from the daily newspaper La Dernière Heure.
In fact, the parents themselves called the emergency services.
Initial evidence in the investigation indicates that the litle boy had been punished and forced to remain in his pyjamas on the balcony of the family home. He apparently had had to do so from 5 a.m. until 8 p.m.
The child remains in a critical condition and his twin sister was also admitted to hospital.
Both children show signs of abuse and evident malnutrition.
The case has been referred to a judge from the juvenile field. The judge has confirmed that both children have been admitted to hospital. The Public Prosecutor’s Office reports that the stepfather, aged 21 years, confessed all without appreciating the seriousness of what had happened. However, the mother, aged 31, is in denial.
The stepfather is registered as living in the commune Saint-Josse-ten-Noode, whilst neither the children’s mother or the children themslves are registered as living in Belgium.
The mother and children are of French nationality and the children are not being educated in Belgium. It is not known how long all three of them have been here. The Public Prosecutor’s Office explained that formal proceedings to remove parental authority are likely to be undertaken.