Marc Dutroux, a Belgian paedophile and murderer serving a life sentence, is to undergo a new psychological assessment that could ultimately lead to his early release, following a ruling on Monday by a Brussels court.
Dutroux was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2004 for kidnapping six
girls in the 1990s, raping them and confining them to a dungeon-like
cellar. Four of them died.
The court granted a request by Dutroux's lawyers for five
psychologists to evaluate the now 62-year-old and assess his
condition as well as his likelihood of repeat offending, the Belga
news agency reported.
The new assessment is due by mid-May.
In Belgium, a life sentence usually amounts to around 30 years. Since
2017, Dutroux's lawyer Bruno Dayez has been working on his client's
release. He wrote a book last year arguing why he should be freed.
Repeat offenders can only be released once they have completed at
least two thirds of their sentence and pose no more risk to society,
among other factors.
In 2013, a Belgian court rejected a request for Dutroux to serve the
rest of his sentence under house arrest with an ankle bracelet,
arguing that he had no chance of reintegrating into society.
An accomplice of his was recently set free, however, under certain
In this file photograph taken on June 14, 2004, Belgian paedophile Marc Dutroux sits in the dock during his trial at the court house of Arlo