Police find drug gang’s sound-proofed torture chamber dubbed ‘the treatment room’ with dentist chair, pliers, scalpels and hedge cutters hidden in Dutch sea container
- Dutch police also found a make-shift prison in a warehouse in Wouwse Plantage
- The raid was possible after French police cracked the communication network
- Officers said they found the torture chamber before any there were any victims
Dutch police found a sea container that had been converted into a sound-proofed torture chamber with a dentist’s chair, tools including pliers and scalpels and handcuffs.
Officers were investigating the criminal drug trade when they found the torture room and a make-shift prison in a warehouse in Wouwse Plantage, a small village in the southwestern Netherlands, close to the border with Belgium.
They said police raided the warehouse before anyone could be tortured and had already alerted potential victims who went into hiding.
Police were able to conduct the raid after the French police cracked their communications network and encrypted criminals’ phones to read millions of messages.
The messages from an EncroChat phone tipped police off about warehouse, called the ‘treatment room’ and the ‘ebi,’ a reference to a top security Dutch prison.
They arrested six men on June 22 on suspicion of crimes including preparing kidnappings and serious assault.
The ‘dentist chair’, where prisoners would have been strapped in and tortured
The chair had belts attached to the arm and foot supports. Police saw photos of the ‘treatment room’ on encrypted chats before the raid
Hammers, wire cutters, pliers and even a hedge trimmer were set up for use on victims
The messages also included photos of the container and dentist’s chair with belts attached to the arm and foot supports.
Police were able to warn potential victims, after reading the encrypted messages, who were able to go into hiding.
Video released by the police showed a heavily armed arrest team blasting open a door at the warehouse and discovering the improvised prison.
‘Six of the containers were intended as cells in which people could be tied up and one container was intended as a torture chamber,’ Andy Kraag, head of the police’s National Investigation Service, said in a video released by police.
A search of the containers uncovered bags containing tools including hedge cutters, scalpels and pliers.
The tools ‘were likely intended to torture victims or at least put them under pressure,’ the police statement said.
Dutch police use explosives to enter a building where a torture chamber is hidden in a shipping container in Wouwse Plantage, Netherlands
A heavily armes arrest team blasted open a door at the warehouse and arrested over 100 suspects
When they searched the containers they found tools including ncluding hedge cutters, scalpels and pliers
The whole investigation has lead to more than 100 suspects, seized more than 8,000 kilograms of cocaine, seized over 1,200 kilograms of crystal meth, dismantled 19 synthetic drug labs and seized dozens of firearms.
Andy Kraag said that the police operation ‘prevented a number of violent crimes.’
On June 22, Dutch national police force officers arrested six men on suspicion of crimes including preparing kidnappings and serious assault.
Another armed team detained a suspect in Rotterdam.
In searches of other properties, including what police described as a base for the criminals near the port city of Rotterdam, officers found police uniforms and body armor, stolen vehicles, 25 firearms and drugs.
A court in Amsterdam ordered the six suspects held for 90 days as investigations continue.
‘This is a great result of the 26Lemont investigation,’ Kraag said. ‘And, take it from me, many more results will follow.’