Suspect confesses to gang raping Dutch women in Antwerp hotel

A police car in Antwerp, Belgium
A police car in Antwerp, BelgiumPhoto: bert76 / Wikimedia Commons

Four young men were arrested on suspicion of gang-raping two Dutch women in a hotel in Antwerp early on Saturday morning. Three of them admitted to being in the hotel, but deny raping the young women. The fourth confessed, his lawyer told Belgian newspaper Het Laatste Nieuws.

The two Dutch women, aged 21 and 22 years from Leiden, met the men at discotheque Roxy in Antwerp on Friday night. Two of the men took them back to their hotel room during around 5:00 a.m. on Saturday morning, and were later joined by two others. The four men left the hotel again around 8:00 a.m.

When the young women woke up after 10:00 a.m. they remembered little of the night before. They thought that only their money and cellphones were stolen. But when hotel workers told them about the men, they started remembering more of what happened and called the police. It is believed they were drugged.

Mohamed S., 22 from Antwerp, was the first to be arrested after he returned to the hotel on Saturday night, according to the newspaper. "My client let himself be dragged along by his friends this past weekend", lawyer Luc Verheyen said to the newspaper. "On Saturday he immediately regretted it. That is why he returned to that hotel. To talk to the victims."

According to the lawyer, S. confessed when the police questioned him. "At the start of the interrogation he burst into tears. The police confronted him with the victims' terrible story. What these young women had to undergo for three hours is simply horrific. 

S. told the police that he and a friend took the young women back to their hotel room around 5:00 a.m. and their two other friends later joined them. According to S. "one thing led to another". He told the police that the women said "stop", but eventually all four men had sex with them. "They did not really struggle too much. While we were busy, they fell asleep regularly." When the four men left around 8:00 a.m., the women were sleeping deeply.

The young Antwerp man gave the police the names of his three friends - 19-year-old Tijani D. from Temse, 20-year-old Eliel B. from Borgerhout, and 20-year-old Lamine N. from Antwerp. "My client will not be thanked for that, but at least he takes his responsibility", Verheyen said to the newspaper. The other three deny raping the women.

Whether the two young women from Leiden were drugged is not yet clear. S. denies putting anything in their drinks, but can not speak for his friends. The first blood test results showed that the women did not have rohypnol, a well known date-rape drug, in their systems, according to Het Laatste Nieuws. The results of more tests are expected in the coming days.