Ex "not surprised" that Dutch man is linked to Romanian girl's murder

Johannes 'Joop' V.
Johannes 'Joop' V.Photo: YouTube

The ex fiance of the 47-year-old Dutch man suspected of murdering an 11-year-old girl in Romania is not surprised by the accusations against him. "It is a shock, but he had a past. This is not really a surprise for me", she said to Omroep Brabant. Johannes V., who went by Joop according to the broadcaster, died in a suspected traffic suicide on Monday after the Romanian police started looking for him.

According to the ex, who asked to remain anonymous, V. was previously sentenced to multiple years in prison and institutionalized psychiatric treatment for several sex crimes. Exactly what these sex crimes entailed, she did not say. When she was in a relationship with him, she did not know about his past. 

"After four or five months he asked me to marry him. He had to tell me everything about his past from his probation officer. I myself have a daughter who is not his and who was young at the time. Soon after that I ended the relationship. We would have gotten married in 2011", she said to the broadcaster.

According to her, V. regularly traveled to Romania. She described the man as very intelligent and charming. He had a good job at an IT company until his death. 

The Public Prosecution Service would not tell Omroep Brabant anything about V.'s criminal record. "We will not comment on that. The investigation is ongoing in Romania. It is not up to us to go into details about individuals."

V. lived in Beers, where he recently bought a farm in the countryside. Local residents told the broadcaster that he was married and the father of a teenage daughter, who he had with another woman. He did not have much contact with the neighbors, only the farmer from whom he bought the farm. "He only lived here since May. He was such a nice man. He bought my house and kept in touch", his neighbor said. He never thought V. capable of such a thing. 

V. was suspected of the murder of 11-year-old Mihaela Fieraru in Romania. The young girl did not come home from school on Friday. She was found dead around 7 kilometers from her hometown on Sunday. 

A car rented by V. was seen in security camera footage shot in Gura Sutii, the town in Dambovita, Romania, where the girl went missing. The video was captured at about the time she disappeared, shortly after 5:15 p.m. on Friday. She was likely killed soon after, Romanian authorities reportedly said.

V. left Romania by plane on Saturday. On Monday he died in what the police believe was suicide in Escharen. He swerved his car into oncoming traffic, colliding with a truck head-on. The truck driver was unharmed.