The wife of Belgian photographer Ben Lievens and his suspected murderer arrested in Brazil
Tuesday, 19 May 2015
On Monday, Brazilian police announced they had arrested two suspects for the murder of a Belgian hotelier in Rio de Janeiro. The victim’s partner, who is thought to have ordered the killing, and a military fireman have been taken into custody. 48 year old Ben Lievens was killed in San Teresa, an area in the centre of Rio de Janeiro, on the 5th of April. His laptop and phone have disappeared. Investigators explored several leads, including violent burglary and revenge, as Ben Lievens was about to buy land in Bahia. But they eventually concluded that the murder was ordered by his younger wife, Ana Kellen Moura, 32, who he had been married to for 6 years.
Not long before the murder, she had lodged 4 complaints with the centre for battered wives, due to domestic violence. A judge had granted a restraining order.
Ana Kellen has been arrested, along with Sandro Fernando Rei, 39, a military fireman. He is suspected of carrying out the murder. Two guns and torture equipment was found at his house, as well as over 100 credit cards and various identification documents. He is also suspected of two other murders.
Ben Lievens, originally from Berlaar, moved to Brazil 10 years ago, and set up a Bed and Breakfast. Before that, he travelled the world as a photographer, even going to the most dangerous places. He followed child soldiers in Africa, travelled the north of Iraq with the Kurds, and worked in the Brazilian shanty towns several times. His reports were sold to Flemish magazines.