Man arrested in East Sussex farm murder inquiry

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Julian Gardner
Image caption,
Police believe Julian Gardner was killed during a burglary that went wrong

Police investigating the murder of a businessman at his farm in East Sussex have arrested a 40-year-old man from Kent.

The body of Julian Gardner, 53, was discovered by his business partner near outbuildings at Bush Barn Farm, near Robertsbridge, on Monday.

He had suffered several fractures and compression injuries.

Sussex Police said they arrested a man in Ashford early on Saturday and were holding him on suspicion of murder.

Police believe Mr Gardner was killed during a burglary sometime between 2300 BST on Sunday and 0200 BST on Monday.

Burnt-out vehicles

They think he may have disturbed people forcing their way into outbuildings where he ran a business repairing agricultural machinery and cars.

One theory is that his injuries were sustained when he was crushed between two vehicles.

Two burnt-out vehicles found abandoned a few miles away are being examined.

A Land Rover Defender, which belonged to Mr Gardner, was found at Cripps Corner, and a Jeep Cherokee was found near a pond in Sandhurst, Kent.

Mr Gardner's 90-year-old widowed mother, Molly, was asleep in the main farmhouse when he was killed.

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