VIDEO – Disappearance of Estelle Mouzin: drones, ground penetrating radar … the impressive technical resources of the gendarmes

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INQUIRY – The gendarmes began on Tuesday a new series of searches in Issancourt-et-Rumel, in the Ardennes, to try to find the body of Estelle Mouzin, whose serial killer Michel Fourniret confessed to the murder. To do this, exceptional technical means.

Are we getting closer to an outcome in the Estelle Mouzin affair? New excavations are underway in a wooded area near Charleville-Mézières where the 9-year-old girl at the time was reportedly kidnapped by Michel Fourniret and his ex-wife, Monique Olivier. Away from prying eyes, about fifteen gendarmes explore every square meter of this undergrowth. Trees are numbered and stakes mark areas already explored, while dirt is turned in several places.

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Death of Estelle Mouzin: 18 years later, finally the truth?

Monique Olivier claims to have accompanied her ex-husband Michel Fourniret on this small country road, 18 years ago. She would have stayed in the car while he buried Estelle Mouzin’s body. It is therefore this entire 200-meter-long zone that the investigators are exploring. “Twenty after trees may have grown, so this is what the investigators do, they look at the ground according to the elements at their disposal to see what is the best technique that should be deployed”, advances General Patrick Touron of the Judicial Pole of the National Gendarmerie.

Special cameras and geo-radar

Among these techniques, there are first of all drones equipped with special cameras. Using light spectrum analysis, they can identify any evidence that is invisible to the naked eye, such as hidden clothing. But they only work on the surface. So the gendarmerie called on another technique capable of probing the basement. It is a geo-radar. “In this device, we have what is called a geo-radar antenna which will emit an electromagnetic wave which will penetrate the ground. Up to 2, 3, 4 or 5 meters deep”, explains Christophe Norgeot, president of MDS (Survey Equipment).

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On a control screen, the gendarmes can then immediately identify all the buried evidence. “As soon as we have inverted V shapes that we call hyperbolas, we will be able to say that we have an object buried in the basement”, continues the engineer.

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All these instruments are already available to investigators on site, but the topography of the sloping, uneven terrain complicates their task. The excavations could last nearly a week.

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