Armed police raided a southern French monastery on Tuesday after reports that an elusive Catholic aristocrat suspected of murdering his entire family was hiding there.
Worshippers had sighted a man resembling Xavier Dupont de Ligonnès during masses at the monastery. The descendant of a French count, Dupont de Ligonnès is one of France’s most wanted fugitives. He has been on the run for nearly seven years following the massacre of his wife and four children, along with their two labradors – leading to comparisons with Lord Lucan in the UK
Twenty officers surrounded the monastery in Roquebrune-sur-Argens, a mediaeval village near Cannes where Duipont de Ligonnès was last seen leaving a budget hotel in 2011.
Initially police struggled to communicate with monks who have taken a vow of silence.
After painstaking inquiries and a two-hour search, however, they concluded that it was a case of mistaken identity. “We believe worshippers in fact saw a monk resembling Dupont de Ligonnès,” a police source said.
The businessman is suspected of burying the bodies of his wife and four children, aged 13 to 20, under the patio of their elegant townhouse in the western city of Nantes in April 2011.
They had been missing for three weeks before their bodies were discovered. Prosecutors said they were “methodically executed”. Each had two bullets fired into the backs of their heads at close range from a gun with a silencer.
The bodies were then covered in lime and buried in bags under the concrete.
To cover up the disappearances, Dupont de Ligonnès told the private Catholic school which his children attended that the family had emigrated to Australia. The family was religious and regularly attended church services together.
Friends of the family said Dupont de Ligonnès told them that he was an American secret agent and was being taken into a witness protection programme.
It was only when inquiries began to be made into his family’s whereabouts days after they vanished that he went on the run.
Police have since followed up hundreds of reports of sightings, almost all in the south of France, but all have turned out to be false leads.
Click Here: camiseta rosario central