Nov 19 2010
Detectives are searching a multi-million pound mansion in connection with a murder inquiry in which a man's battered body was found in a van.
The dying man, who was in his 40s, was found by officers when they pulled the vehicle over in Sunningdale, Berkshire, on Wednesday.
Police are focusing the murder inquiry on an unoccupied six-bedroom mansion nearby. The sprawling, modern property is reportedly worth more than £3 million.
A spokeswoman for Thames Valley Police said: "We conducted a forensic examination of the house in connection with the murder inquiry."
Police are reportedly investigating whether the man was held at the empty house before his death.
Four men tried to escape from the van after it was pulled over by police on Wednesday afternoon. Three men were quickly arrested but officers had to use a helicopter to find and capture a fourth man.
Following the arrests, officers searched the white Mercedes Sprinter and discovered the critically injured man, who was "breathing shallowly". Paramedics tried to revive him but he was pronounced dead at the scene at around 2pm.
Witnesses said the victim was wrapped in bags and one officer at the scene remarked that he appeared to have been tortured. Bystanders also said a sledgehammer, which may have been used to attack the victim, was recovered from the van by investigators.
A post-mortem examination found the cause of death to be from head injuries. Formal identification is expected on Friday afternoon.
The four men, all arrested on suspicion of murder, are aged 24, 26, 54 and 56. They remain in police custody.