Dutch family found living in hidden room for 9 years was waiting for the 'end of time': Reports

Six adult children and a man believed to be their father were discovered living in a covert room on a farm in the Netherlands after the oldest sibling escaped and sought help at a local pub, authorities say.

The saga began when a disheveled 25-year-old man with "long hair," a dirty beard" and "old clothes" entered Café De Kastelein, a small pub in the rural village of Ruinerwold owned by Chris Westerbeek, on Sunday and ordered five beers.

The confused-looking man proceeded to tell Westerbeek he had just escaped captivity in his family's home, where he had been held for the past nine years while "waiting for the end of time," the bar owner told Dutch broadcaster RTV Drenthe.

"He said he was the oldest and wanted to end the way they were living," Westerbeek said.

Photos from the case: 

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Family found living in bunker for 9 years was waiting for the 'end of days': Police
Police inspect the area of a farmhouse in a remote area of northern Netherlands' province of Drenthe, near the village of Ruinerwold, on October 16, 2019 a day after Dutch police discovered a hidden staircase behind a cupboard leading to a cellar where a man and five others believed to be his children aged between 18 and 25 were hidden and reportedly spent years "waiting for the end of time", officials said. - Local media said the family were found after one of the sons went to a nearby pub in a confused state, drank five beers and then asked for help, saying he had not been outside for nine years. Police arrested a 58-year-old man at the scene for failing to cooperate with the investigation, but he was not the father. Many questions were unanswered and police are investigating "All scenarios". "At this point we cannot give further information," local police said. (Photo by Vincent Jannink / ANP / AFP) / Netherlands OUT (Photo by VINCENT JANNINK/ANP/AFP via Getty Images)
A plain clothes policeman inspects the farmhouse in a remote area of northern Netherlands' province of Drenthe, near the village of Ruinerwold, on October 16, 2019 a day after Dutch police discovered a hidden staircase behind a cupboard leading to a cellar where a man and five others believed to be his children aged between 18 and 25 were hidden and reportedly spent years "waiting for the end of time", officials said. - Local media said the family were found after one of the sons went to a nearby pub in a confused state, drank five beers and then asked for help, saying he had not been outside for nine years. Police arrested a 58-year-old man at the scene for failing to cooperate with the investigation, but he was not the father. Many questions were unanswered and police are investigating "All scenarios". "At this point we cannot give further information," local police said. (Photo by Vincent Jannink / ANP / AFP) / Netherlands OUT (Photo by VINCENT JANNINK/ANP/AFP via Getty Images)
This aerial picture taken on October 15, 2019 shows a farmhouse in a remote area of northern Netherlands' province of Drenthe, near the village of Ruinerwold, where Dutch police discovered a hidden staircase behind a cupboard leading to a cellar where a man and five others believed to be his children aged between 18 and 25 were hidden and reportedly spent years "waiting for the end of time", officials said. - Local media said the family were found after one of the sons went to a nearby pub in a confused state, drank five beers and then asked for help, saying he had not been outside for nine years. Police arrested a 58-year-old man at the scene for failing to cooperate with the investigation, but he was not the father. Many questions were unanswered and police are investigating "All scenarios". "At this point we cannot give further information," local police said. (Photo by Wilbert Bijzitter / ANP / AFP) / Netherlands OUT (Photo by WILBERT BIJZITTER/ANP/AFP via Getty Images)
A general view shows a farmhouse in a remote area of northern Netherlands' province of Drenthe, near the village of Ruinerwold, on October 16, 2019 where a day after Dutch police discovered a hidden staircase behind a cupboard leading to a cellar where a man and five others believed to be his children aged between 18 and 25 were hidden and reportedly spent years "waiting for the end of time", officials said. - Local media said the family were found after one of the sons went to a nearby pub in a confused state, drank five beers and then asked for help, saying he had not been outside for nine years. Police arrested a 58-year-old man at the scene for failing to cooperate with the investigation, but he was not the father. Many questions were unanswered and police are investigating "All scenarios". "At this point we cannot give further information," local police said. (Photo by Vincent Jannink / ANP / AFP) / Netherlands OUT (Photo by VINCENT JANNINK/ANP/AFP via Getty Images)
This aerial picture taken on October 15, 2019 shows a farmhouse in a remote area of northern Netherlands' province of Drenthe, near the village of Ruinerwold, where Dutch police discovered a hidden staircase behind a cupboard leading to a cellar where a man and five others believed to be his children aged between 18 and 25 were hidden and reportedly spent years "waiting for the end of time", officials said. - Local media said the family were found after one of the sons went to a nearby pub in a confused state, drank five beers and then asked for help, saying he had not been outside for nine years. Police arrested a 58-year-old man at the scene for failing to cooperate with the investigation, but he was not the father. Many questions were unanswered and police are investigating "All scenarios". "At this point we cannot give further information," local police said. (Photo by Wilbert Bijzitter / ANP / AFP) / Netherlands OUT (Photo by WILBERT BIJZITTER/ANP/AFP via Getty Images)
This aerial picture taken on October 15, 2019 shows a farmhouse in a remote area of northern Netherlands' province of Drenthe, near the village of Ruinerwold, where Dutch police discovered a hidden staircase behind a cupboard leading to a cellar where a man and five others believed to be his children aged between 18 and 25 were hidden and reportedly spent years "waiting for the end of time", officials said. - Local media said the family were found after one of the sons went to a nearby pub in a confused state, drank five beers and then asked for help, saying he had not been outside for nine years. Police arrested a 58-year-old man at the scene for failing to cooperate with the investigation, but he was not the father. Many questions were unanswered and police are investigating "All scenarios". "At this point we cannot give further information," local police said. (Photo by Wilbert Bijzitter / ANP / AFP) / Netherlands OUT (Photo by WILBERT BIJZITTER/ANP/AFP via Getty Images)
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Westerbeek called police, who responded to the farmhouse and discovered a small, secret staircase behind a cupboard in the living room that led to an area where the family lived, including six siblings between the ages of 18 and 25 and their alleged father, who, reports suggest, may have been bedridden due to a stroke. 

It remains unclear where the children's mother is, although local mayor Roger de Groot said she had died some time ago, the BBC reports.

The patriarch, 58, was arrested after refusing to cooperate with the investigation, local police said.

"There are many speculations about what happened," Drenth Police wrote on Twitter after the case received widespread media coverage. "A team of investigators is investigating possible criminal offenses. We want to do this carefully and cannot answer everything immediately."

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