Belgian child killer Dutroux's lawyers postpone parole bid

Brussels (AFP) –


Lawyers for Belgian child killer Marc Dutroux will postpone a long-planned parole request after a psychiatric report concluded he remains dangerous, a member of his legal team said on Wednesday.

"It is very, very negative," lawyer Bruno Dayez said about a report he initially hoped would be a step towards Dutroux's bid for freedom.

Dutroux, who is 63 and has been held in solitary confinement for 24 years, is in prison for the rape and murder of several girls in the 1990s.

He was sentenced to life in prison in 2004 for abducting and raping six girls in 1995-1996. Two of his victims were murdered and two died of starvation in a dungeon he kept in the basement of his home.

His lawyers' application for the mental evaluation was backed by the prosecution during a special court hearing last year in the central Belgian prison where Dutroux is incarcerated.

Dutroux's psychological profile has not been assessed since 2013. During his trial 15 years ago he was described by experts as a "real psychopath," a "perverted narcissist" and a "manipulator".

His lawyers wanted to update the assessment in the hope he might obtain conditional release in 2021 by which time Dutroux would have served 25 years behind bars.

Dayez said the report again describes the narcissistic character of his client, combined with a lack of empathy, characteristic in the eyes of the experts of "a psychopathic profile".

Dutroux must therefore be kept "in a strict and closed environment" because he "remains potentially dangerous and presents a high risk of recidivism", the lawyer added, quoting from the report.

"I must postpone my plans because proposing a credible reclassification plan with this diagnosis... I don't really see who will accept", he said.

The lawyer added, however, that he was only giving up the conditional release attempt "for the time being".

"I never said I was giving up."