A drug dealer failed to fake his own death in a desperate attempt not to be brought to justice.
The infamous criminal named Gabriel C – known in Belgium as “Lange Vingers” (Lange Fingers) – staged photos of himself being tortured to death, complete with the word “thief” carved into his chest.
The images were presented as evidence that he had been tortured to death by a rival drug gang after he was convicted of stealing cocaine and ordered to secure passage to a port in Antwerp.
However, the authorities failed to step in for the “tortured to death” trick and he has since been arrested and charged.
C is now sentenced to four years in prison and fined £ 16,193 for his part in a 113kg cocaine trafficking operation dating back to 2016.
The criminal had tried to sell the drugs he had transferred from the shipment he was supposed to supervise.
And last year, he went into hiding after the Albanian drug gang he stole turned him into an outspoken man.
The gang retaliated by attacking several addresses – including homes and warehouses – armed with AK-47 rifles and hand grenade explosives while searching for C.
C had already been wanted for a series of crimes committed in 2015.
In an attempt to falsify his own death, he released images of himself, seemingly slumped in a chair with his hands tied and fake wounds all over his body.
C had “stab wounds” on his torso, fake blood all over his body and the word “thief” carved into his chest as part of the ruse.
The Belgian authorities reduced his sentence from five years to four, even after the failed attempt to convince the police that he was dead.
His lawyer argued in court that he was “sorry” for his past crimes, claiming that his wife and three-year-old son had taught him what “taking responsibility” meant.
The fake images first surfaced last year, but experts ruled last December that the images were fraudulent.
Brussels Times reported at the time: “The visible wounds are most likely the work of professional make-up artists, probably someone who works in the film world.”
They added, “The wounds on his body, apparently fatal, are fake, according to four doctors who studied the images, including a forensic pathologist.”