Home News Manhunt launched for anti-lockdown sniper who threatened virologist

Manhunt launched for anti-lockdown sniper who threatened virologist

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Belgian police have launched a manhunt for a heavily-armed soldier who threatened a virologist supportive of COVID-19 vaccines and restrictions.

Corporal Jurgen Conings, 46 — dubbed the “Rambo” of anti-vaxxers by local media — allegedly swiped four missile launchers, a machine gun and a pistol from his barracks near Limburg on Monday and went into hiding in a nearby forest, according to the Guardian.

Conings — a trained sniper who served in Afghanistan — reportedly a left suicide note to his family fuming that he “could no longer live in a society where politicians and virologists have taken everything away from us,” the outlet reported.

Members of the Belgian police and army personnel are seen near the entrance of National Park Hoge Kempen in Maasmechelen, Belgium, while scouring to capture Jurgen Conings.
Members of the Belgian police and army personnel are seen near the entrance of National Park Hoge Kempen in Maasmechelen, Belgium, while scouring to capture Jurgen Conings.
REUTERS/Johanna Geron
Over 250 special force troops were reportedly deployed to the National Park Hoge Kempen in Dilsen-Stokkem, Belgium in the search for Corporal Jurgen Conings.
Over 250 special force troops were reportedly deployed to the National Park Hoge Kempen in Dilsen-Stokkem, Belgium in the search for Corporal Jurgen Conings.
JAMES ARTHUR GEKIERE/Belga/AFP via Getty Images

Another note reportedly declared that he “would join the resistance and would not surrender.”

The unhinged soldier had recently threatened and staked out the home of Belgian scientist Marc Van Ranst, who led the country’s coronavirus response to the pandemic, the virologist has said.

Van Ranst was forced into hiding after the incident and Conings was placed on desk duty earlier this year after tweeting “Who has Van Ranst’s address?” according to the Guardian.

Corporal Jurgen Conings
46-year-old Corporal Jurgen Conings has been dubbed the “Rambo” of anti-vaxxers by local Belgian media.
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More than 250 special force troops on Wednesday were deployed to the Hoge Kempen forest near the Dutch border with helicopters on standby to search for the Conings, The Times of London reported.

Army sources this week called Connings “an extreme right-wing weapons nut who does not shy away from violence” and “an antivaxer who hates Van Ranst,” according to Het Laatste Nieuws.

Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo said it was “unacceptable” that Conings had been given access to weapons considering his history.

Heavily armed soldiers prepare themselves at the entrance to Nationaal Park Hoge Kempen in Maasmechelen, Belgium.
Heavily armed soldiers prepare themselves at the entrance to Nationaal Park Hoge Kempen in Maasmechelen, Belgium.
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