A decimated family and an unsolved mystery. On September 5, 2012, Brett Martin, a former soldier in the Royal Air Force, arrived at a forest car park on the heights of Lake Annecy. On the spot, the cyclist discovered a macabre scene in a BMW station wagon registered in Great Britain: a family killed by bullets. In the vehicle? The lifeless bodies of Saad al-Hilli, 50, a British engineer, his wife Iqbal, 47, a dentist, and his 74-year-old mother-in-law. Killed by several bullets in the head, this family seemed to have no connection with Sylvain Mollier, a cyclist whose body was found riddled with bullets a few steps from the scene. From this slaughter of Chevaline, only two little girls came out almost unscathed: Zaina, 7 years old, wounded by a bullet in the shoulder, as well as Zeena, 4 years old, who had curled up under her mother’s legs.

Ten years after the tragedy, many questions remain unanswered. “Why get rid of the adults and not the children? I have the impression that the assassination was carried out in a way to attract curiosity in order to make an example of it without seriously injuring the children. It was deliberate”, is asks a resident of the town of Claygate, near London, to RTL. Since the death of their family, they have disappeared from radar, placed under protection by the British police and heard again a few months ago. “I don’t know where they are. It’s a well-kept secret, but the police assured me that they had psychological support and I believe that they live with their aunt, said another neighbor of the Al-Hilli family. I was just told that they are happy and doing well.”

The Chevaline massacre is not a “cold case”

Ten years after the Chevaline massacre, the investigation is still ongoing. “I think we are not very far away. We will succeed thanks to scientific evidence”, declared the public prosecutor of Annecy last February to the Tribune de Genève. Line Bonnet then declared that three investigators were working on this file full time. “For us, it’s not a ‘cold case’ at all!, she specified. They decided to start everything from the beginning, to check all the seals. in order to close the doors one after the other.” Last January, a biker was taken into custody before being released by the police. Will Zaina and Zeena ever know the truth?


Lara T.
Lara T.

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