Prison sentences of up to nine years,
In the high-profile case about an underworld prison in wouwse Plantage in Brabant, prison sentences of up to nine years were imposed on Wednesday. A total of seven shipping containers, one of which was set up as a torture container, were discovered early by the police in 2020 before there could be casualties.
That the containers set up in a warehouse had the purpose of detaining and torturing criminal rivals is considered sufficiently proven by the court. The defense’s argument that the containers were only for show was brushed aside.
The court sees evidence for the lurid purpose in the many intercepted messages sent with encryption service EncroChat. Communication in the hands of the police and the judiciary after hacking the server of EncroChat. Explicit messages clearly talk about torture and killing people.
According to the court, the main responsible is Roger P., better known as Piet Costa. The man received a prison sentence of two years and nine months. That has everything to do with his previous conviction for drug smuggling of fifteen years. Because there is so much overlap between the two cases, he could get a total of up to seventeen years and nine months.
Another main suspect Robin van O. is so seriously ill that the case against him has been postponed. The question is whether that case will ever happen again.
Quarrel over millions of reasons for conflict
The reason for underworld prison would be a conflict between Piet Costa and former business partner Alireza D. The quarrel was about tens of millions that would have been pushed back by D. and escalated with the death of Ibrahim Azaim in Rotterdam in May 2020. Azaim was a close contact of Costa and D. was held responsible for his death.
Thanks to the hack of EncroChat, the police were able to read along with messages and, in their own words, intervene just in time before victims were detained in Wouwse Plantage.
During the raid on the warehouse, torture devices such as saws and scalpels were found, insulated and therefore soundproof containers and a dentist’s chair in which people could be tied.
With fast vehicles, stolen police uniforms, flashing lights and stop signs, the intention was to kidnap criminal rivals as an arrest team.
“Clearly, the intention was to inflict serious suffering on people,” the court said. “And that’s shocking.”
Prison sentences of up to nine years in ‘shocking’ case about torture container
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