Hackathon leads to arrest of Most Wanted on the run for 17 years

Nicolas Theodorou, a convicted criminal, who has been on the run for seventeen years, has been arrested in Greece.  The 50-year-old was convicted by the court of assises for the attempted murder of two car dealers seventeen years ago and had been without a trace ever since.

He was put on Belgium’s Most Wanted List six years ago. Members of the Belgian Fugitive Active Search Team, FAST, a federal police body, assisted Greek police in the arrest of the criminal in the Peloponnese.  Theodorou had been Number 23 on the list.

Originally from Nivelles (Walloon Brabant) he was sentenced to 25 years in jail in 2005. The attempted murders happened in 1999 and Theodorou had been at liberty awaiting the trial at which he never turned up.

The criminal is the fourth on the Most Wanted List to be arrested since Belgian police services, the intelligence service, military intelligence and customs staged a Hackathon, when various services sat down together in a bid to catch wanted criminals on the loose by scrutinising open sources. Open sources are sources of information that are readily accessible e.g. social media and websites. 

The federal police say the Hackathon resulted in new useful information that contributed to Theodorou’s arrest by Greek police in Tripoli (Greece).  Belgium is now seeking Theodorou’s surrender.

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