The police are closely examining a burnt car with an assault rifle inside, found at Tal-Virtu’ this afternoon, amid suspicion that the weapon was the one used yesterday for the murder of Raymond Caruana, 54.

The car, an Opel Corsa, was reported missing in September from Pieta'.

Police Assistant Commissioner Silvio Valletta said at a press conference that whoever had wanted to kill Mr Caruana had sprayed his Jeep with bullets, and some 30 spent rounds were found by the police on the scene.

Mr Caruana was found dead behind his car in San Blas, near Zebbug  at 9.20pm yesterday.

Mr Valletta said that it appeared that as he was being shot at, Mr Caruana got out of his Jeep and tried to hide behind the vehicle.

He died there after having been hit five or six times in the face, chest, hands and legs.

An autopsy will be held on Monday.

Mr Valletta said that although Mr Caruana was known to the police (having been accused of involvement in the attempted bribery of late Judge Ray Pace) if was not known what the motive of the murder was. CCTV from all around the farmhouse is being examined.

No reports of death threats had been received. It is not known if the case was linked to other murders in the past few months.

Some people are being interviewed by the police but Mr Valletta remarked that the police had to go through all the people that Mr Caruana knew.

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