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Last Updated: Wednesday, 10 March, 2004, 17:18 GMT
Kidnap victim at Dutroux's trial
Laetitia Delhez (right) with her counsel
Ms Delhez has not confirmed that she will give evidence
A woman who was abducted and raped by alleged Belgian child killer Marc Dutroux has attended his trial for the first time.

Laetitia Delhez, who was 14 when she was kidnapped in August 1996, listened to testimony at the trial in the south-eastern town of Arlon.

Ms Delhez, who is now 22, was rescued six days after her abduction.

Mr Dutroux denies murdering four girls, but admits to some of the kidnapping and rape charges against him.

He stands accused alongside his wife Michelle Martin, as well as Michel Lelievre and Michel Nihoul.

Hard to bear

Ms Delhez was released along with 12-year-old Sabine Dardenne, who had been incarcerated by Mr Dutroux for two-and-a-half months

DEFENDANTS
Marc Dutroux, 10 March 2004
Marc Dutroux, 47 - unemployed electrician charged with kidnap, rape, murder
Michelle Martin, 44 - Dutroux's estranged wife, charged with conspiracy to kidnap
Michel Nihoul, 62 - businessman charged with kidnapping
Michel Lelievre, 32, charged with kidnapping, rape, drug possession

Ms Delhez is due to give her own testimony later. But unlike Ms Dardenne, Ms Delhez has not confirmed that she will take the stand.

On Wednesday investigating magistrate Jacques Langlois gave further details of his six-year inquiry.

He began by apologising to parents of two of the dead girls, An Marchal and Eefje Lambrecks, about the gruesome nature of his testimony.

"What they will hear before the court now is particularly hard to bear," he said.

He then said Mr Dutroux and co-defendant Mr Lelievre had picked up two girls near the coast in August 1995.

They were drugged, raped, and taken to Dutroux's house where they were buried alive in the garden, Mr Langlois said.

Wider plot?

Last week, in his first testimony to the trial, Mr Dutroux admitted to carrying out sex attacks on young girls he had held captive in his cellar.

But he denied kidnapping the eight-year-olds Melissa Russo and Julie Lejeune, who starved to death, or murdering An Marchal and Eefje Lambrecks.

Mr Dutroux blames his co-defendants for their deaths.

He has said he was a small cog working for a well-connected paedophile ring, and has accused two unidentified policemen of involvement in the abductions.

The trial began last week and is due to last at least two months.

About 500 witnesses are expected to give evidence.




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