Body of slain British expat found in well

A Frenchman has been arrested on suspicion of murdering his British neighbour whose body was found at the bottom of a well in a Normandy village.

Body of slain British expat found in well
The village of Pierres in Calvados, Normandy, where the body of a British neighbour has reportedly been found.

Police have arrested a Frenchman suspected of killing his British neighbour by throwing him down a well near his home in Normandy.

The body of David King, 70, originally from London, was found at the bottom of the four-metre well in the village of Pierres by sniffer dogs on Wednesday.

The retired lorry driver had been missing since late October but police initially refused to open a missing persons case because they believed he had travelled abroad.

King's car was found abandoned in a nearby town in February.

The 28-year-old suspected of killing him was detained on Wednesday and told police he had had a row with his neighbour, said local prosecutor Carole Etienne.

"He admits he put the body in the well," she added, saying it was "highly probable" that the corpse was that of his British neighbour.

But "he has not yet explained the circumstances of the death. I have the before, I have the after, I don't have the in between."

Etienne said an autopsy would be carried out on the body of the Briton, who was believed to have been living in Normandy for the past 15 years.

The body of an Englishwoman, Patricia Wilson, who was believed to have been murdered in her home in 2012 in the south-western region of Aveyron, has never been found.

Her gardener, with whom she reportedly had an affair, has been in custody since August 2012 awaiting trial on charges of murdering her.



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French police seize 2.4 tonnes of cannabis near Bordeaux

France’s Economy Minister has praised the work of Bordeaux law officers, after they seized more than 2.4 tonnes of cannabis resin with an estimated street value in excess of €19 million.

French police seize 2.4 tonnes of cannabis near Bordeaux

Bruno Le Maire and Minister Delegate in charge of Public Accounts Gabriel Attal in a joint statement: “Once again, Customs distinguished itself with an exceptional seizure of cannabis, recalling its key role in the fight against drug trafficking. We congratulate the customs officers for their daily commitment to the protection of our fellow citizens.”

Two people were taken into custody after officers stopped a lorry from Spain on the A63, near the Saugnac-et-Muret toll area, just south of Bordeaux, on Monday.

According to Le Figaro, the drugs were hidden in side compartments of the lorry, and concealed by its stated load of wheat, and were discovered by a sniffer dog during the stop.

In total, 2,414.8kg of cannabis resin and 9.75kg of cannabis herb were intercepted by the Bordeaux brigade, with an estimated value of more than €19 million on the illicit market.

Since the end of July, 2022, Customs officials have seized nearly 73 tonnes of drugs, including 41.2 tonnes of cannabis.

The French drugs squad is now investigating to determine the point of origin of the drugs, as well as their destination and the crime network behind the smuggling attempt.