Belgian PM Elio di Rupo's laptop stolen from car

Elio di Rupo (file pic May 2014) Elio di Rupo became prime minister in 2011 but took on the role of caretaker leader after elections in May

Related Stories

A thief has broken into the car of outgoing Belgian Prime Minister Elio di Rupo in Brussels, stealing his laptop.

The theft took place on Monday while Mr di Rupo was at the gym, but details have only just emerged.

His spokesman has denied reports that the laptop contained state secrets and sensitive details about the royal family.

The theft primarily involved "personal notes and some work documents", the spokesman said.

The thief saw his chance when Mr di Rupo's driver popped into a bookshop while the prime minister was in the gym in the centre of Brussels, Dutch-language daily Het Laatste Nieuws reported on Thursday.

He smashed a side window in the Audi A6, folded the back seat and found the laptop in the boot of the car.

The prime minister made a statement to police soon afterwards in which the newspaper reported he had referred to important details about internal politics and the royal family.

A briefcase, suit, white shirt and mobile phone charger were among other items stolen, the report said.

But Mr di Rupo's spokesman said the theft did not involve classified information or state secrets and the laptop itself was thoroughly protected. Such documents were always transported according to rules and adapted procedures, a statement said.

Brussels police are investigating the theft.

Mr di Rupo's computers have received unwanted attention in the past, too. In September 2013, federal prosecutors opened an inquiry into two possible hacking incidents in the prime minister's office.

A French-speaking Socialist, he took on the role of prime minister in 2011 after more than 500 days of political deadlock in which Belgium was left without a government.

He submitted his resignation after elections in May this year, but has continued in the role in a caretaker capacity.

More on This Story

Related Stories

More Europe stories

RSS

Features & Analysis

  • Abdi Nor IftinGolden ticket

    How a refugee entered a lottery and won a new life in the US


  • Herring in a fur coatMerry herring

    How fish 'in a fur coat' is enough to make Russia's New Year happy


  • Amy Adams, Cate Blanchett, Sandra Bullock and Dame Judi DenchFilm quiz of 2014

    How much do you remember about the past 12 months?


  • Curiosity Self-Portrait at 'Windjana' Drilling SiteIn pictures

    The most stunning space photos of the year


Elsewhere on the BBC

  • GeoguessrWhere in the world...?

    Think you are a geography expert? Test your knowledge with BBC Travel’s interactive game

Programmes

  • Tom BrookTalking Movies Watch

    Tom Brook looks back at some of the best movies of 2014 from around the world

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.