A Dutch family lived in isolation on a secluded farm for nine years "waiting for the end of time" until they were discovered this weekend when one of them escaped to a local bar - where he drank five beers, according to reports.
Café De Kastelein owner Chris Westerbeek told RTV Drenthe that the man looked completely confused, was wearing old clothes and had a long beard. Once police converged on the farmhouse, they discovered "a staircase to the basement behind a cupboard in the living room", RTV reported, noting that the father had a medical issue and was confined to a bed.
The police have yet to confirm whether the 25-year old man is part of said family.
According to the family, he is the father of the six children, say police.
Police said they found the family in a "small space in the house which could be locked" and that it was unclear whether they were being held against their will.
RTV Drenthe reports the family appears to have had little contact with the outside world in recent years, and may have subsisted on vegetables and livestock grown in a small yard adjacent the farmhouse.
"I have never before been involved in such an extraordinary situation", he said. That is where the six were found, ' Ruinerwold mayor Roger de Groot told a press conference. "Our research is in full swing and we can not share more information at this time", the police force tweeted. On a separate property in the same region, police found a family that had been holed up there for nine years. They were "waiting for the end of time".
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"We do not yet know what the relationship is with the other people".
"He said he had brothers and sisters who lived at the farm".
"He said where he came from, that he'd run away and that he needed help urgently", Westerbeek said. They said they may have been there since 2010.
A 58-year-old man was arrested. "So there must be someone else", they said.
The Algemeen Dagblad newspaper reported that the farmhouse was being rented by a man - but the property's owners, Klaas and Alida Rooze, claimed to the outlet that they were blindsided by the disturbing discovery. Local media have identified him as a handyman who paid rent on the property, but it's unclear what he is being accused of.
None of the family members were registered with the local government, police said, meaning there was no way to know they existed.
The local postman said he had never once delivered any mail to the home.