DNA test to show whether concealed children are related to father

Gerrit Jan van D.
Gerrit Jan van D., the father of six children kept hidden on a farm in Ruinerwold. April 15, 2013 Photo: Gerrit jan van d. / Facebook

The Public Prosecutor wants to perform DNA tests to determine whether Gerrit Jan van D. really is the father of the six now-adult children who lived with him in complete isolation on a farm in Ruinerwold for years, a spokesperson for the Public Prosecution Service confirmed to NU.nl after reports in Dagblad van het Noorden.

The children themselves told the police that Van D. is their father, but as they are not registered in the Basic Persons Registration, this is not an established fact. The Public Prosecutor therefore wants to test their DNA for certainty.

The family was discovered in mid-October when one of the children, a 25-year-old named Jan, left the farm and told his story at a local bar. The bar owner called the police, who discovered five other young people living with Van D. in a hidden space on the Drenthe farm.

Van D. is in custody along with Josef B., an Austrian man who rented the farm where the family was found. They are both suspected of deprivation of freedom, harming the health of others, and money laundering. They will both appear in court in Assen on Wednesday for a proforma hearing, during which the status of the investigation will be discussed and the court will decide whether or not to extend their pre-trial custody.