Jurgen Conings, 46, was on the run after escaping from his home near the Dutch border on May 17 and is believed to be heavily armed.
He threatened virologist Marc Van Ranst – who led Belgium’s public health response to the Covid-19 pandemic – and police launched a manhunt to find him.
Today, a month after the initial search began, Belgian officers said the man’s body was found in the woods near Dilsen-Stockhem, in the province of Limburg, by people walking in the area .
Johan Tollenaere, from the eastern town of Maaseik, told VRT News: “During my mountain bike ride this morning, in a part where few people come, I smelled a strong smell of corpses.
“I immediately thought of Jurgen Conings and notified the police. They found the body. “
The far-right soldier is probably “dead by suicide by firearm,” said the Belgian federal prosecutor in a statement.
However, they said the cause of death “will need to be established during a future forensic examination.”
Hundreds of special forces soldiers have been deployed to try to locate Conings, who was on a counterterrorism watchlist.
Justice Minister Vincent Van Quickenborne told VTM Nieuws at the time: “There are indications that he is violent and, in the past 24 hours, evidence has emerged that the man poses an acute threat. . “
He had a three-decade career as a sniper before he started making racist threats and remarks on Facebook.
Conings was disciplined but still allowed to work with weapons.
He had hidden anti-tank missile launchers and other heavy weapons in an army barracks before disappearing.
The research dominated the headlines of newspapers nationwide and Conings was labeled “Belgian Rambo” after the 1980s action flick starring Sylvester Stallone.
Following threats from Conings, Van Ranst and his family were moved to a safe place.
After announcing the discovery of a body yesterday, the virologist tweeted: “My thoughts are with the relatives and children of Jurgen Conings.
“For them, this is very sad news, because they lose a father, a relative or a friend. “