Judge accuses father of missing Córdoba children of premeditated murder

Until now José Bretón had been accused of their forced disappearance

The judge in charge of the investigation into missing children Ruth and José Bretón has formally accused their father of their premeditated murder. Until now the Judge José Luis Rodríguez Lainz had accused José Bretón of their forced disappearance, but new forensic reports on bones found in a rural property belonging to Bretón’s family, which confirmed that the remains are human, have seen the case take a twist.

The children disappeared in October last year, with Bretón claiming that they had gone missing while under his care at a park in Córdoba. However, police were suspicious of his account of events from the start, in particular given that his wife had recently requested that the couple divorce.

The remains of a bonfire were discovered on the Las Quemadillas property on the same day that Bretón reported the children, ages six and two, missing. But he told officers that he had burnt objects belonging to his wife in it, while his children were sleeping.

An initial study of the remains found that the bones – which were in a very bad state, given that the temperature of the fire reached up to 800ºC – belonged to rodents, but three reports that have been carried out since have concluded that they are actually bones of children corresponding to the ages of Ruth and José.

José Bretón was taken back to the Las Quemadillas property yet again on Tuesday, with the aim of finding more remains from the bonfire. The father of the children has maintained his innocence throughout the investigation.

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