Belgian police are investigating a hunter who reportedly found the body of fugitive soldier Jurgen Conings and took pictures which then turned up in German media, apparently for a fee.
Hunter Leonard “Nard” Houben, who had been cycling at the time, said he almost tripped over the dead man’s foot while investigating the source of a pungent aroma that he thought was a dead animal while on a trip in the Hoge Kempen National Park.
He told local media that he was trying to discover the body when he realised it was a person.
The country’s justice minister Vincent Van Quickenborn said photographing the body and selling the pictures was “distasteful and morally reprehensible”.
The dead fugitive who was on a watch list because of his far-right links was the subject of a massive manhunt after he was found to have gone on the run with a stash of weapons after threatening a virologist and his family.
It was later discovered that Conings, 46, had committed suicide by shooting himself in the head with one of his weapons, but initially this was not known by police who carried out an extensive search operation to try and locate the “armed and dangerous” suspect.
As well as guns he even had anti-tank rockets and was hunted after threatening virologist Marc Van Ranst for supporting COVID-19 vaccines, with the scientist and his family given police protection during the operation.
The man’s lifelesss body was eventually found in the woods in Dilserbos, in eastern Belgium, after several weeks but it has now been revealed that the body which had started to smell had already been spotted and apparently photographed by the hunter.
He is then accused of selling the photographs in the video to German newspaper Bild for a large amount of money, according to local Belgian newspaper Nieuwsblad.
The hunter meanwhile has admitted having contact with a journalist from Bild who had interrogated him over the matter, but denies selling the pictures, saying: “I’m not crazy”.
Story By: Georgina Jadikovska, Sub-Editor: James King, Agency: Newsflash