Brussels - A Belgian court granted a conditional release on Tuesday for Michelle Martin, the ex-wife and accomplice of notorious paedophile killer Marc Dutroux.

Martin, 52, who was convicted in 2004 of helping Dutroux but has been in prison since the case was uncovered in 1996, is to enter a convent but not in regions where families of victims live.

The court said she would go to Malonne in central Belgium, and not to Liege in the east or to a province of Luxembourg that shares the same name as the neighbouring country, national news agency Belga said.

She is to "keep her distance" from relatives of victims.

Martin had three times been refused parole and had previously intended to seek refuge in a French convent, before French authorities blocked that bid.

Dutroux was jailed for life in June 2004 for the kidnap and rape in the 1990s of six young and teenaged girls, four of whom died.

Martin was found guilty of helping Dutroux hold his victims prisoner, and of complicity in the deaths of two eight-year-olds. - Sapa-AFP