The torture chamber discovered last month in a container in Wouwse Plantage was full of attributes that can be used to torture. For example, pruning shears, loppers, a branch saw, scalpels, pliers, extra handcuffs, finger cuffs and tape were found, the Public Prosecution Service (OM) reports in a detailed report about the case on Tuesday.
Six other container spaces were arranged as a cell. Handcuffs were attached to the ceiling so that someone could be chained standing up with their arms raised.
"Furthermore, there was only a chemical toilet. In the corner was a camera mounted, to keep a distance view of the situation in each cell," said the OM. "The image of the sea containers is freezing and shocking."
NRC wrote about the torture container based on sources last week, and also reported that six suspects had been arrested. The Public Prosecution Service confirms this and can further report that this concerns, among others, a 40-year-old man from The Hague, a 44-year-old man from Nieuwegein and a 43-year-old man from Rotterdam. The other suspects are from Spijkenisse, Utrecht and Lexmond.
They are suspected of preparing kidnapping, hostage taking, serious abuse and extortion and participating in a criminal organization. "Two suspects have also been detained for possession of weapons," the OM summarizes. No persons have actually ended up and been tortured in the container.
Police release images of Brabant's 'torture chamber'
OM: 'Shed was designated as treatment room'
Police have been observing the shed since April. The hack of EncroChat, which was made public last week, allowed police and justice to read the messages that criminals sent to each other through the program for weeks.
"In those messages, photos were sent of a pilot and a sea container with a dentist's chair, with straps on the armrests and the footrest. There was talk of kidnapping and torture," the prosecution outlined.
"If I have him on the chair, more will come" and "But that dog is missing" are some of the messages read by police and law enforcement. "The warehouse was designated as 'ebi' (which is the Extra Secure Facility in Vught) and 'treatment room'", reports the Public Prosecution Service. The targets of the upcoming kidnappings have been signaled and could go into hiding.
Police clothes and weapons found
The torture container also has seating and sleeping facilities. "Probably for guards to stay longer," said the Public Prosecution Service. The search also found seven small arms and an automatic rifle. Another 25 weapons were found during searches at the suspects' residential addresses.
In another container space, sets of police clothing, bulletproof vests and flashing lights were found. On Tuesday it was decided to extend the men's pre-trial detention by 90 days.
One of the cells in the container. (Photo: Public Prosecution Service)