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16th Oct 2019

Six ‘children’ rescued from basement after nine years spent underground

Jade Hayden

They had not been outside for nine years.

Six “children” have been rescued from a basement after nine years spent underground.

The “family,” who had spent almost a decade in the farm basement “waiting for the end of days,” were discovered this week by police in The Netherlands.

Suspicions were alerted in the Dutch region of Drenthe when a 25-year-old disheveled man arrived to a pub and drank five pints of beer before asking for help.

The pub’s owner, Chris Westerbeek, told local news organisation RTV that the man appeared very unkempt and confused.

“You could see he had no idea where he was or what he was doing,” he said. “He said he had run away and that he urgently needed help.”

“He had long hair, a dirty beard, wore old clothes and looked confused. He said he’d never been to school and hadn’t been to the barber for nine years.

“He said he had brothers and sisters who lived at the farm,” added Westerbeek. “He said he was the oldest and wanted to end the way they were living.”

When local police attended the farm, they discovered a secret staircase leading down into a hidden basement where seven people were living “waiting for the end of days.”

A 58-year-old man, who is described as the group’s “father” was arrested at the scene.

It is thought that he may have suffered a stroke.

The six family members received urgent medical attention having lived in a “closed off space” for nine years. They were not registered with any authorities.

“As far as I know their mother died before they arrived there,” said mayor Roger de Groot. “Police found makeshift living quarters where the family was living in hiding.”

“Police said they have taken into account their mother may have been buried at the farm. We still have many unanswered questions.”