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Deaths thought to be murder-suicide

A couple and two children, including a baby, have been found dead with stab wounds in an apparent murder suicide in an apartment in Gibraltar.

Police in the British Overseas Territory were called to the property in the Boschetti's Steps area at 11.35 this morning.

They found a 31-year-old man of British nationality, a 37-year-old woman of Spanish nationality, a four-year old girl of Spanish nationality and a baby girl who was six weeks old.

Detectives and forensic officers are working in the flat and the area remains cordoned off.

A spokesman for the Royal Gibraltar Police said: "It is believed that all the deceased belong to the same family.

"However, there are still inquiries being conducted to locate close relatives of the family and as you may understand it is for this reason that the identities of the deceased are not being disclosed.

"At this present moment in time, a full investigation is being conducted by officers of the serious crime unit to establish the cause surrounding the untimely deaths of this young family and are encouraging anyone who maybe able to support the investigation to contact the duty officer of the Royal Gibraltar Police.

"Presently, we are not looking for anyone involved in this very unfortunate event, but the investigation will be thorough and detailed drawing in on the expertise of other professionals.

"Her Majesty's Coroner has already been informed and has visited the scene."

Spanish media reported that the family had been living in Spain and had only recently arrived in Gibraltar.

The British man involved was originally from Liverpool, according to police sources quoted by El Mundo newspaper.

The newspaper said the four-year-old girl was believed to be the woman's daughter from a previous relationship, while the baby had been born in Spain.

A spokesman for the Royal Gibraltar Police confirmed that "at present" the deaths appeared to be a murder-suicide.

The spokesman said he understood that next of kin in the UK have been informed of the tragedy.

Asked how the police were alerted, he said: "A member of staff of the company that was letting out the flat, which is a rental property, attended the residence.

"They got no answer from within but noticed that the house was locked from inside and that sent a few alarm bells ringing and they decided to call the police.

"At the moment what we are doing is trying to get as much background information from both the Spanish and the UK sides of the family."

None of the deceased are thought to have been known to police or social services in Gibraltar.

The spokesman added: "These people had only been in Gibraltar for a few days, I think it was either last Thursday or Friday that they arrived.

"We are trying to discover if they were here in transit to the UK or whether they were planning on staying for any length of time in Gibraltar."

A Home Office forensic pathologist is expected to travel to Gibraltar in the next couple of days to perform post-mortem examinations on the bodies.

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