Couple arrested over disturbing act in Emiliano Sala tragedy

Police have confirmed that they have made two arrests over the release of photographs of late Argentine striker Emiliano Sala.

The world of football was plunged into mourning in January when the former Nantes man’s aircraft disappeared over the English Channel while he was flying to sign terms with Cardiff City.

Sala’s body was later discovered in the wreckage of the plane by investigators, while efforts to find pilot David Ibbotson were later called off.

Shortly after post-mortem examinations concluded on the 28-year-old player, photos of the procedure began to circulate on social media, causing widespread revulsion.

Emiliano Sala’s body was recovered from the wreckage. Image: Instagram/AFP
Emiliano Sala’s body was recovered from the wreckage. Image: Instagram/AFP

And investigating officers have now released details of the operation which has led to a woman and man being held on diverse criminal charges.

“As part of the enquiries by Dorset Police, a warrant was obtained for an address in Wiltshire and, on February 18, this warrant was executed by officers from the Digital Investigations & Intelligence Unit within Wiltshire Police,” a statement from Wiltshire Police confirmed on Monday.

“A 48-year-old woman from Corsham was arrested at the scene on suspicion of unauthorised access to computer material (an offence under the Computer Misuse Act) and malicious communications, and is currently released on conditional bail.

“As the police investigation continued, a 62-year-old man from Calne was also arrested on suspicion of unauthorised access to computer material, and is currently released under investigation.

“Wiltshire Police have been liaising with Dorset Police, the HM Coroner for Dorset, Bournemouth Council (now BCP Council) and the Holly Tree Lodge Mortuary as enquiries progressed. Emiliano’s family have also been kept informed throughout this investigation.

Emiliano Sala. Image: Getty
Emiliano Sala. Image: Getty

“There is no evidence to suggest a break-in at the mortuary, and no evidence to suggest that any staff from the mortuary, or indeed any other council employees, are involved in any wrongdoing.”

Double tragedy

Linda Barker, speaking on behalf of the BCP Council, was quoted in the statement as saying: “We have been working with Wiltshire and Dorset Police to ascertain how images from Holly Tree Lodge Mortuary were obtained.

“Maintaining the private and respectful environment of the mortuary remains an absolute priority.

“Given that there is an ongoing police investigation, it would be inappropriate to comment further.”

The Sala family suffered further loss this month with the news that Emiliano’s father Horacio had passed away.

The 58-year-old truck driver suffered a heart attack on the morning of April 26 in his home in Progreso, in the Argentine province of Santa Fe.