Two people held over family murders

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The Independent Online

Detectives today arrested a man and a woman in connection with the murder of a mother and her three children.

The 35-year-old woman, from Burnage, Manchester, was held this morning by officers probing the murder of Uzma Rahan and her three children, whose bodies were found at the family home in Cheadle Hulme, Greater Manchester, on Sunday. The 40-year-old man, also from Burnage, was arrested a short while afterwards.

Ppost-mortem examinations concluded that Mrs Rahan and her children Adam, 11, Abbas, eight, and Henne, six, all died from head injuries.

After confirming the two arrests, Detective Superintendent Martin Bottomley, of Greater Manchester Police, said: "We are still actively looking for Rahan Arshad and I now believe that he left the country on around July 29. We will be liaising with our colleagues in international police forces to help us to trace him."

A car belonging to Mr Arshad, 36, was found abandoned in a car park at Heathrow Airport. It is believed to have been parked there for several weeks. It is thought that the taxi driver may have fled to Pakistan, where he has relatives.

The grim discovery was made shortly after 5.05pm on Sunday when officers were called to the house in Turves Road, Cheadle Hulme, near Stockport.

Officers broke down the door to the family's home on Turves Road and found the four bodies. Forensic experts believe Mrs Rahan, 32, and her children had been killed up to four weeks earlier.

Not all the victims were found in the same room, but detectives would not be drawn on their locations within the property or a possible murder weapon.

Detective Superintendent Bottomley, who is leading the murder hunt, said the family had lived in the house for around 18 months and the young children were all pupils at a local primary school. Mrs Rahan was from Pakistan and her husband was born in Britain.