Geraardsbergen/Brussels. The Federal Judicial Police East Flanders has rounded up a gang suspected of committing numerous burglaries in East and West Flanders. The gang observed churchgoers and market vendors, among other things, before breaking in on a later day, assuming that no one was present in the house at the time. On October 3, three suspects from the same family were arrested, two of whom were placed under arrest warrant.
At the beginning of 2022, the local police of Geraardsbergen-Lierde established that seven burglaries in homes were committed while the victims were at church. Similar facts also occurred in neighboring police zones and the East Flanders Public Prosecutor’s Office decided to charge the East Flanders Federal Judicial Police with the further investigation of a total of 20 linked domestic burglaries. The investigating judge in Oudenaarde is also requested by the public prosecutor to continue the investigation.
From a thorough investigation, suspects from the region of Saint Ghislain come into view. These seem to be eligible for burglaries in both East and West Flanders, where they first observe their victims to find out where they live and when they are not at home. This observation takes place, among other things, during church services and at market vendors. In the burglaries, money and jewelry were often stolen and disorder was also created.
On October 3, the FGP East Flanders carried out three house searches at the suspects in Quaregnon and Saint-Ghislain (2). In Quaregnon, a 19-year-old man was taken for questioning, in Saint-Ghislain two brothers, aged 35 and 45. Both brothers are known for previous facts and the eldest brother turned out to be free under certain conditions.
The suspects were brought before the investigating judge in Oudenaarde on 4 October, who placed the two brothers under an arrest warrant and released the youngest suspect under strict conditions.