Thieves deny shooting at police, stealing truck
16 June 2006, BRUSSELS — The two men arrested in Péruwelz on Thursday have denied stealing a truck and shooting at police during their attempted getaway.
16 June 2006
BRUSSELS — The two men arrested in Péruwelz on Thursday have denied stealing a truck and shooting at police during their attempted getaway.
The two suspects are French nationals. They were found near a public high school in the Henegouwen municipality after a tense police search.
Both men are known to justice authorities in Belgium and France and were found in the cellar of a computer shop after an hours-long siege.
The men admitted they were planning to rob the computer store, but claim they are not the gangsters who stole a truck on Wednesday night and fired shots at police during a motorway pursuit, news service VRT reported.
"They were not carrying a gun and no weapons were found in the hiding place either," the chief commissioner of the Péruwelz-Bernissart police zone, Philippe Durieux, said.
Police intercepted two suspects stealing a truck shortly before 1.30am on Thursday and set off in pursuit of the fleeing thieves.
The fugitives fired at police during a wild motorway pursuit involving three police cars before dumping the truck and scaling a wall into a Péruwelz high school.
Reinforced by federal police, local police officers sealed the area off and searched the school and surrounding area. The two Frenchmen were eventually arrested in the nearby electronics store.
The residents of three streets were evacuated out of precaution during the police operation.
[Copyright Expatica News 2006]
Subject: Belgian news