It was an extremely frustrating case for the investigators: four people were killed in September 2012 in the French Alps near the town of Chevaline, and all traces did not lead to any result.
But now, more than nine years later, the police can apparently report a success: A man is in custody, as confirmed by prosecutor Line Bonnet. He was arrested after investigators reconstructed the course of events. Like the newspaper Le Parisien reported with reference to matching sources, the person arrested is a man who was already targeted by investigators in 2014.
The quadruple murder of Chevaline is considered to be one of the most mysterious murder cases in recent years. The perpetrator shot a British couple of Iraqi tourists and the wife’s mother in a forest parking lot. A cyclist who was obviously passing by by accident was also killed. Only the two daughters of the couple, who lived near London, aged four and seven, survived. A shocking detail: after the crime, the four-year-old initially hid under the legs of her dead mother for eight hours before the forensic team found her when the corpses were recovered.
The public prosecutor initially did not provide any further details about the arrest and referred to the ongoing investigation. After the completion of the police custody, the public should be informed again, it said.
As a motorcyclist, the suspect, who comes from the Chevaline region, was noticed by forest workers in the area at the time of the crime. After the publication of a phantom image in 2013, he did not volunteer. He did not come into the focus of the investigation until 2014 because he had been in the vicinity after evaluating cell phone data at the time of the crime. Although the ex-police officer was temporarily arrested, there was no trial because there was no connection to the crime. The man testified at the time that he stayed near the crime scene for paragliding, his hobby.
At the on-site visit, the motorcyclist makes himself suspicious
In September, the investigators organized an on-site meeting in order to reconstruct possible processes around the crime with various parties involved and thus possibly come across new approaches. The forest workers and the now 57-year-old motorcyclist were also involved. According to Le Parisien There were inconsistencies in the times given by the motorcyclist.
The victims were each shot twice in the head with a rare weapon, and the older girl was hit in the back and seriously injured while trying to escape. It was a Luger 06 automatic pistol that was developed at the beginning of the last century and is very popular with gun collectors. The motorcyclist is also said to be a gun collector. After various weapons were found, he was also investigated for illegal arms trafficking in 2014.
The victims’ family was obviously on vacation at a campsite in the popular holiday region. Against the background of a possible inheritance dispute as a motive, a French-British team of investigators had a family member arrested. But here too there was not enough incriminating material, the man was released. The Iraqi father had worked in the space industry. The police also checked speculations that he might be involved in espionage activities – the investigation remained unsuccessful.