Specialised units joined officers of the federal judicial police Antwerp section and officers of the Mechelen-Willebroek police zone to accomplish the raids at addresses in Mechelen, Willebroek, Heist-op-den-Berg, Boom, Hemiksem and Haacht. Ten individuals, all linked to the Outlaws motor bikers’ gang, were arrested. Those detained were aged between 38 and 61 including a 38-year-old woman.
Kristof Aerts is a spokesman for the public prosecutor’s office: “Large quantities of cash as well as weapons and ammunition were seized: a score of handguns, one Kalashnikov, knives and a hand grenade”.
An examining magistrate will decide whether those arrested need to remain in custody.
“The judicial investigation carries on. Membership of a criminal gang and violations of weapons’ legislation are among charges that may be brought” says Aerts.
The investigation that has been underway for months was triggered by the discovery of a weapons cache in a garage in Mechelen in November. 24 hand grenades, seven firearms, two shotguns, two rifles and a dozen cans of pepper spray as well as hundreds of rounds of ammunition were found.