Alain Ghozland, a city councilor in Créteil, a suburb of Paris, was found dead at home on Tuesday morning.
His brother found the body after Ghozland had not showed up to the synagogue the day before, according to reports in the Metro newspaper.
Police in France are yet to comment on how the 73-year-old, a prominent member of the local Jewish community, had died, but relatives of Ghozland told Metro that there were signs he had been stabbed and beaten.
A police source told Metro newspaper that it was simply too early to tell how he died. Early investigations report that the man's apartment had been searched and a car belonging to the victim had disappeared.
An autopsy is expected to yield further information and a judicial source told Metro that every lead is being investigated.
While it remains unclear if the man was indeed a victim of a botched robbery or a targeted attack, and if so whether there was an anti-Semitic motive, there have been an alarming number of assaults on Jews in France recently.
As recently as Monday a Jewish teacher was attacked with a machete in Marseille.
The attack prompted a Jewish leader in the city to urge his fellow Jews not to wear skullcaps “until better times“.
The growing insecurity in France's Jewish community has pushed many to make “aliyah” and emigrate to Israel, with record departures in 2015 of 7,900 people, according to official figures. Although there are numerous reasons, more than just security fears, to explain the exodus.