There is a suspect in the picture for the murder of Nicky Verstappen. The police announced this during a press conference on Wednesday.
It is a 55-year-old man from Simpelveld, who according to the police has no connection with Nicky Verstappen or his hometown Heibloem. "We know who he is, but do not know where he currently resides," police said.
The suspect came into the picture because he did not comply with the call to voluntarily donate DNA earlier this year. The suspect left for foreign countries in October 2017. From April 2018 every trace of him is missing and he is reported missing by his family.
Unsolved murder from 1998
The then 11-year-old Nicky Verstappen from Heibloem disappeared in the night of 9 to 10 August 1998 during a summer camp on the heath at Brunssum in South Limburg. A day later, in the evening of 11 August, he was found dead in a pine forest near the camp. Repeated police investigation did not provide any clarity about a possible perpetrator.
Also read this report from Limburg correspondent Paul van der Steen about the DNA research
This spring followed the largest DNA-related research ever held in the Netherlands. Justice ordered 21,500 men to donate their DNA: 17,500 men in the immediate vicinity of Heibloem and the site of Nicky's body, plus another four thousand people who lived in those places at the time, but have since moved, and relatives of deceased men who lived there.
In June it was announced that three thousand men would be approached again. In the end, almost 15,000 men deposited their DNA in a study that, twenty years after the murder, should lead to the perpetrator.
Peter R. de Vries, who represents Nicky's family at the press conference, shouted on Wednesday morning that "a battle of 20 years is now being rewarded!"
PeterRdeV Peter R. de Vries BREAKING NEWS: Jaaaa ….! There is – finally – a BREAK in the case of Nicky Verstappen! Hoera! I will make a comprehensive statement with the family at noon on pressco of the police / judiciary in Maastricht. A battle of 20 years … will be rewarded! Today is the day! https://t.co/Mk0Mb35m2J