Mutilated body found in France likely elderly Briton: prosecutor

16th April 2015, Comments 0 comments

The mutilated body of what police believe may be a missing elderly British woman was found "in two different areas" of a southern French region where she lived, prosecutors said Thursday.

Violet Price has been missing from her home in Moustier village since last week. Her son, who lives in the same area, raised the alert on Saturday after he went to her house when she failed to respond on the phone.

Police immediately started looking for the 80-year-old widow who lived alone, mobilising 70 officers, a helicopter and divers, and searching hospitals as well -- to no avail.

A source close to the probe had said she was "neither depressive nor suicidal", adding that there was no apparent reason for her disappearance.

Local prosecutor Pascal Prache said Thursday a suspect had been detained and questioned.

"Given the declarations of the suspect and observations on site, it appears to be the body of Violet Price," he said, adding that an autopsy would confirm this.

The suspect, aged around 30, told police where to find the body parts in two different areas of the southern region.

Prache said the suspect had already been sentenced in 2005 to eight years in prison for manslaughter.

He added that the man and Price knew each other, though they were not close.

They were both however present at a meal hosted by the in-laws of Price's son Saturday, both left separately mid-afternoon, but for reasons as yet unknown, both found themselves at her home later in the day.

That was the last time Price gave any sign of life.

© 2015 AFP

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