On Wednesday morning a 16-year-old boy died after being stabbed in the Antwerp district of Berchem. He was stabbed several times by a total of three assailants. Two of the assailants were minors. They fled the scene. The victim was taken to hospital, but later died of his injuries.
The boy’s attackers then took the train from Antwerp to return home to Aalst. Later on Wednesday two suspects aged 16 and 18 were apprehended by police. The 18-year-old suspect was questioned by an Examining Magistrate on Thursday. The Examining Magistrate decided that the teenager be formally arrested and charged with murder. He will appear before magistrates on Monday.
A Juvenile Magistrate has sent the 16-year-old suspect to a secure youth detention centre. The Judicial Authorities will neither confirm no deny whether a third suspect is being sought.
The murder is probably linked to drill rap gangs. Drill rap is a genre of rap music with particularly violent lyrics. Groups of youths that are involved in this particular sector of youth culture often make videos that they post on social media to threaten members of rival gangs.
The Antwerp Judicial Authorities say that there are indications that Wednesday’s incident is linked to a fight an stabbing at Antwerp’s Central Station in October.