Joost Knevel, the third ringleader of a group of conspiracy theorists making wild claims about the western Dutch town of Bodegraven, has been arrested in Spain, the public prosecution service has confirmed to DutchNews.nl.
Together with Micha Kat and Wouter Raatgever, the trio made repeated posts on social media claiming that the town’s mayor Christiaan van der Kamp and RIVM chief Jaap van Dissel were operating a pedophile network and committing ritual child sacrifice.
The 43-year-old was picked up during a routine check. He has been living in Spain with his wife and children and, until Thursday, had evaded authorities. He was wanted in the Netherlands on charges of inciting violence.
Knevel, who was born in Bodegraven, claims to have recovered memories of witnessing children being murdered in the town and of being sexually abused by van Dissel.
In July, a judge ruled that the three had to immediately stop posting lies about the city on their social media and delete any existing posts within 48 hours. ‘There is no objective evidence whatsoever for the far-reaching allegations, which are causing a lot of unrest among citizens,’ the District Court of the Hague said in a statement.
Kat was arrested in Northern Ireland in July and he is now awaiting the outcome of an extradition procedure. Raatgever was sentenced to nine months in jail in June for distributing inflammatory videos.
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