A man who was arrested for the 2012 murder of a British family and a cyclist in the French Alps has been released and has been “excluded” as a suspect, prosecutors said.
Police arrested the man on Wednesday as part of a new investigation into the murder of Saad al Hilli, 50; his wife Iqbal, 47, and his stepmother Suhaila al Allaf, 74, on a secluded road near Annecy on September 5, 2012.
In a statement, the Annecy prosecutor said: “No charges have been brought against the person who was questioned.
“The explanations given and the checks carried out allow us to rule out his participation in the facts. The investigation is continuing.”
Mr al Hilli, his wife and his mother-in-law died after their BMW was sprayed with bullets at close range in a parking lot.
Mr. al Hilli’s two daughters, aged four and seven, were in the car at the time of the shooting and survived.
French cyclist Sylvain Mollier, 45, also died after being shot seven times.
The four victims and two survivors were found by police in a wooded area.
Eric Maillaud, a prosecutor in Annecy in 2012, said the four-year-old could not help investigators because she was hiding under her mother’s legs during the attack.
Her seven-year-old sister was shot in the shoulder but survived and was found seriously injured outside the car, where three of the bodies were found.
Some 25 cartridges were found inside the vehicle.
All of the victims had at least three gunshot wounds, each also having received a single bullet to the head.
Police struggled to move the case forward, and nine years after the attack, no charges have been laid.