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Men go on trial for burying couple alive

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11:49 CEST+02:00

The trial of two men accused of murdering a gay couple by burying them alive opens on Monday.

Guy Bordenave, 39, and Luc Amblard, 56 lived together in the village of Couy in the central Cher department. 

After not hearing from them for several days, the alarm was raised by one of the men's sisters on March 11th. Police found no obvious signs of a burglary at their home but discovered traces of blood.

The two men were discovered three months later, on June 4th, buried together in a ditch covered with sand, facing each other, their hands bound and their mouths gagged. They had died of suffocation.

One of the two men charged with the murder, Claude Juillet, was a former boyfriend of Guy Bordenave's sister, Marie-Laure. Juillet, 55, together with Christophé Rayé, 39, are charged with the kidnapping and murder of the two men.

Newspaper France Soir reports that neighbours noticed a light in the victims' house at 2am on the morning of March 8th and a white van parked outside.

A few days later, police questioned Claude Juillet and found the keys to the victims' house in his vehicle. He was released but DNA samples of the two accused men were found on objects belonging to the victims. 

Juillet finally confessed to the murders on May 14th, claiming he wanted revenge on the couple who he believed were against his relationship with Bourdenave's sister. 

"They made innuendoes, they tried to break us up, it went on for a long time," he told a psychiatrist, according to newspaper France Soir. This allegedly drove him to want to "solve the problem."

Juillet gave police information that led them to the site where the bodies had been buried.

He told police that they had driven the victims, still alive, early in the morning of March 8th to the banks of the river Loire, 20 kilometres from their home. Juillet had already dug a ditch that was two metres long and one metre deep. The two men were buried in the ditch where they died.

If convicted, the men are likely to be sentenced to life imprisonment. A verdict is expected on Thursday.

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