Police in France have launched a murder investigation after officers investigating the disappearance of an entire family found a severed leg and three bodies.
A 50-year-old business manager, his 49-year-old school assistant wife and their grown-up children — boys aged 21, 18 and 13 and a 16-year-old girl — went missing from their home in the western town of Nantes earlier this month.
The identities of the bodies has have not been released by the authorities.
There has been no trace of the family for more than two weeks.
No financial transactions have been detected, but letters described as “wild and contradictory” were left.
Local prosecutor Xavier Ronsin said: “Many relatives of the family received a letter in which the father, on behalf of the family, explained that he was something like a secret agent working for the United States and he had had to return to the US as part of a witness protection programme as he was participating in an important drug related case.”
The school attended by some of the youngsters was told the family had suddenly moved to Australia.
French police open murder probe after bodies found