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Dutroux investigator refuses victim’s questions

Published on 17/03/2004

March 17 2004

BRUSSELS – The magistrate who carried out the investigation into the alleged crimes of Belgian paedophile Marc Dutroux on Wednesday refused to speak to lawyers of one of the suspected child killer’s victims.

Speaking during Dutroux’s trial in the Belgian city of Arlon, investigating magistrate Jacques Langlois said he would not answer questions from lawyers representing Laetitia Delhez, now aged 22, who was found alive at one of Dutroux’s properties in 1996.

“I do not want to speak with those plaintiffs as I did yesterday,” said a visibly annoyed Langlois.

On Tuesday Delhez’s lawyers criticised the way Langlois had carried out his investigation into the Dutroux affair.

In particular they questioned his conclusion that Belgian businessman Michel Nihoul had not been involved in any of the murders and kidnaps Dutroux stands accused of.

After Delhez was freed in 1996 she told police that she had heard Dutroux saying on the telephone “it worked” to a certain ‘Michel’ or ‘Jean-Michel’.

Her lawyers insist this testimony could show that Nihoul was a high placed member of a paedophile network in which Dutroux was a smaller player.

“It is extremely painful for Laetitia to see that the jury will not hear her testimony,” said her lawyer Jan Ferman.

But Langlois insisted that the fact Dutroux had spoken to a Michel did not prove Nihoul was involved in the crimes.

“There is no direct association between the names and the phrase ‘it worked’. You made that link. There are several Michel’s in this case,” the magistrate told Ferman.

Dutroux is being tried along with Nihoul, Michel Lelievre, a former accomplice and his ex-wife Michelle Martin.

He is charged with kidnapping six girls, including Delhez, and of murdering four of them.

The trial continues.

[Copyright Expatica News 2004]

Subject: Belgian news