Updated at 11.25am
The house where the body of a British woman was found in a decomposed state on Monday evening, was in a filthy and unsanitary state when the body was discovered.
Police sources told the Times of Malta how the two-storey house where the woman and her husband have lived for many years was in an almost abandoned state, with garbage littering the entire place. According to the sources, the fact that the body was in such an advanced stage of decomposition suggested the woman might have died some three months ago.
Authorities found a dead dog underneath a bed and six hungry cats in the property, animal welfare activist Moira Delia wrote on Facebook on Wednesday.
“Please help us rehome these poor cats,” Ms Delia urged her followers.
Neighbours were still in shock on Tuesday after learning that the woman had been found dead in the house, saying they had never suspected anything might have been amiss.
According to one neighbour, the woman’s husband told her that his wife, who friends said went by the name Jan, was “fine” and “all right” some three weeks ago when she asked for her after not seeing her around the neighbourhood for some weeks. The neighbour, the owner of a clothes shop in the quiet St Paul’s Bay street, described how she had asked the man how his wife was doing after hearing she might have been in hospital.
Police called at the couple’s home on Monday after a relative contacted the British High Commission to say that he had been trying to speak to her without success for months. The High Commission then alerted the police.
A High Commission spokesman confirmed that it was “supporting the family” of the British woman, adding that its staff were in contact with the Maltese authorities.
Meanwhile, a friend of the woman who spoke to the Times of Malta on the condition of anonymity, described her as a “lovely lady” who was a quiet, but cheerful, person. She said Jan had been diagnosed with cancer some 18 months ago and had since been to the hospital on several occasions.
The friend insisted that when Jan was still alive she would “always keep her house in order”, adding that she was very fond of her cats and dogs. When Times of Malta visited the St Paul’s Bay street yesterday, one of the cats could still be seen inside the home.
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