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Bart Droog's Research On Hendrik De Jong

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  • Bart Droog's Research On Hendrik De Jong

    Email from Mr. Droog:.

    2017-07-25 11:44
    Dear Howard Brown

    Whilst researching murder cases in The Netherlands 1899-1920 I
    stumbled on newspaper articles regarding Hendrik de Jong (1861- ? )
    and the disappearances of Sarah Ann Juett and Maria Schmitz in the
    Netherlands in 1893.

    You might know him, because he’s one of the Jack the
    Ripper-suspects, figuring on

    I didn’t find any evidence linking Hendrik de Jong to the Jack the
    Ripper murders (De Jong was in 1888 probably imprisoned). But I did
    find out what happened to him after he was released in 1897. In
    January 1898 he was sentenced again for swindle and theft, but was
    released after a succesful appeal.

    He then went to Belgium, where in the night of 18/19 July 1898 he
    killed two women in Ghent. He then presumably fled via Ostend, Dover
    and Liverpool to the United States. According to one report he fled
    then from New York to Buenos Aires.

    His last Dutch lawyer received a letter from him, that was posted in
    Philadelphia, august 1898. It is of course not certain that this
    letter was posted by De Jong himself. He might have asked somebody to
    post it for him.

    In his absence he was sentenced to death in Belgium, in 1900, for the
    Ghent murders.

    In 1905 a skeleton was found in Bussum, not for from the place where
    Maria Schmitz was last seen. At first it was believed to be her, but
    after some investigations it was concluded that this skeleton was
    probably not hers.

    Then, in December 1913/January 1914, another murder happened in
    Belgium, in which he was named as suspect, this time as Wilson or
    Welson, a.k.a ‘Hendrik de Jongh’. A neighbour of the victim had
    lived in 1898 near the murdered women in Ghent, and said she had
    recognized this Wilson/Welson as Hendrik de Jong.

    I guess the witness made a mistake – after initial reports in which
    De Jong was mentioned, I found no follow-ups on this.

  • #2
    Part Two :

    I'll add the links to the articles Bart sent me shortly or perhaps on Thursday.


    • #3
      First Article

      Hopefully, one of our Dutch speaking members will be able to translate this.


      • #4
        Well, it would take months to translate all Dutch newspaper articles from 1889-1914 about con artist and murderer Hendrik de Jong. I'll try to write an English summary, but it will take some time.

        Most important is that Hendrik de Jong was locked away in a lunatic asylum in March 1888. I don't know yet when he was released. I do know that he was living in Amsterdam at the end of 1888, and that he was arrested for swindle on 18 April 1889. In september 1889 he was sentenced to 2 years and 6 months. In 1892 he was released.

        He posed sometimes as a doctor, but had no medical skills what so ever. But he could bluff he was a doctor. Possibly because he had worked in two lunatic asylums, around 1885/1886, where he must have studied how doctors speak and behave. There he learned also how to behave as a lunatic - a skill which he used to escape prosecution in 1888 -Dutch law forbade it then to prosecute insane persons.

        There's no prove that Hendrik the Jong was in England in 1888 (at least: I didn't find any). Dutch newspapers reported in 1893 that the English police thought for a while that he might be Jack the Ripper, but were, circa november 1893, convinced he was not.


        • #5
          Thanks for the information, Bart, and thanks very much for participating on The Forums !


          • #6
            Thanks, Howard!


            • #7


              • #8

                If its too much of a task to translate all of the article(s)....could you please give us the kern van de zaak of them ?

                Thanks !


                • #9
                  Shortly after he was released after serving three years for the Juett - Schmitz case (or better said, for a minor theft case, since they couldn't prosecute him for the murders of the two women), he courts a rich widow and starts to steal from her, telling all kind of crazy stories. It takes her a month before she realizes he's conning her. She goes to the police. He's arrested in september 1897. The trial takes places in January 1898. He's sentenced to 2 years for swindle and theft. But in 'hoger beroep' (a second trial by a higher court) he's acquited.

                  His lawyer is Mr (not 'mister', but 'meester' = 'master', the Dutch title for law school graduates) Aberson. According to him the judges in the lower court were prejudiced against his client, hence their verdict was not fair. The higher judges followed his line of thinking.

                  So, Hendrik was a free man again - and went out swindling and killing in Belgium.


                  • #10


                    • #11


                      • #12
                        Basically, this is about the double murder in Ghent (Belgium), 18/19 July 1898.

                        The victims were the 25-year old maid-servant Jeanne Pauwels and her employer, the 45-year old pub owner Philomène Wauters (also spelled as Wouters, pronunciation is the same).

                        They were killed in their beds. The killer then set fire to their bedroom. As Jeanne Pauwels was courted by a man who hang out in Ghent since April 1898, and was identified as being Hendrik de Jong, Belgian police concluded that he was the killer.

                        They couldn't arrest him though, as he fled shortly after the killing abroad, presumably via Ostend and Dover to New York.


                        • #13


                          • #14
                            More about the Ghent murders. It is stated that the killer used a small American pistol (in some other reports the are women are supposedly killed with a knife). After the killing he tried to set fire to the corpses [?].

                            The prime suspect, who was active in and around Ghent since 16 or 17 April 1898 under different aliases, is Hendrik de Jong.

                            He not only courted the younger victim, but also other young women, constantly making bizarre promisses.

                            He was well dressed, spoke Dutch, German and English, but hardly French.*

                            The police were also looking for an English painter called Alex Winter / Alex de Winter, who was suspected of robbery. He was seen in the company of De Jong.

                            [* Not in this article mentioned, but anyhow: De Jong had received only limited education. When he was ca. 20 years old he served for one or two years in the Dutch colonial army, the Koninklijk Nederlandsch-Indisch Leger, as hornet blower. This army, stationed in the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia) was then (around 1880) basically a kind of Foreign Legion, with many soldiers from other European and African countries/regions. His English and German knowledge might originate from his army days.]


                            • #15