POLICE in Catalonia have taken an American couple into custody after discovering the weeks old corpse of a seven-year-boy in their Girona apartment.
Officers had arrived at the duplex home in a block of flats to investigate claims by their landlord that the couple, described as ´black, middle class´, had not paid rent since September.
Noting the Americans’ anxiety police then entered the flat and were confronted by a strong offensive stench. Investigating the source, an officer discovered the corpse of the boy, presumably their son, with no obvious signs of violence but clearly dead for quite some time.
The couple, who reportedly have two other children, were immediately arrested, while a post mortem examination will take place today January 7.
Neighbours have said that the family was very quiet, with the engineer father the only one to frequently leave the €1,100 per month home. The family had reportedly been living in the area for 18 months, did not speak Spanish or Catalan, and did not send their children to the local schools.
The couple have been arrested on suspicion of manslaughter, which could see charges brought even if they did not intentionally harm the boy, but were negligent in seeking out help.
Police had discovered mattresses near the boy, suggesting that some family members at least, had been sleeping in the same room as the boy, despite the size of the apartment.