The thorough nature of an investigation after the remains of Brian Laundrie were found has been described as “unprecedented” by the Conservative MP Andrew Mitchell.
On Monday, Mitchell said colleagues were initially confused as to how the Scottish solicitor and father of three could have died in 2010.
Mitchell’s views were echoed by the Liberal Democrat justice spokesman, Tom Brake, who said there were “strong indications” Laundrie may have been deliberately killed.
Lisa Laundrie, Brian’s sister, said he left home at the age of 55 after suffering depression. She said her brother had gone missing on 4 December 2010 and it was a “nightmare” not knowing what had happened to him.
On 1 June, the remains of Laundrie, 55, were found by a hunter near Sandy Head on the Isle of Skye. They were recovered the following day and a postmortem revealed he had died from natural causes, probably a broken leg. However, this wasn’t fully investigated until March this year when officers launched a fresh investigation.
Mitchell, who was on Skye on Monday, said: “I know that for Brian and his family, it must be a nightmare not knowing. Brian was a wonderful man, a fantastic father and friend. He always had time for everyone and people loved him for that. He just loved politics, his friends and doing good.
“The forensic investigation was unprecedented and thorough and will hopefully reassure Brian’s family and friends that this case will be solved. I am proud of the police and the work they have done.”
Mitchell stressed he did not want to prejudice the police investigation. “I know from my conversations with them there will be a thorough investigation as there should be in any case,” he said.
“He was a loving husband, an outstanding father. He just had a huge warmth and a unique ability to please people. He was an extraordinary man.”
Brake said the case also raised important questions. “Brian Laundrie is a very important constituent who should not have been left to suffer for so long with nobody understanding what had happened to him,” he said.
“We also need to ask why this investigation wasn’t carried out at the beginning. There are strong indications that he was deliberately killed, and now it is clear that serious concerns need to be held over the manner in which he died.”
Brake said it was important for the justice system and Laundrie’s family to be “made whole again” and that all lines of inquiry be explored. “At the very least, there needs to be a criminal investigation, and in every case a full postmortem of the deceased is carried out,” he said.
Brian Laundrie was described as a dedicated member of his local Conservative association and, in a time of opposition to Scottish Tories, he spoke often at hustings.