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Man drowns himself using murdered wife's head: police

 NOTE: The Australian Press Council found this article did not breach its Standards of Practice. Read the full adjudication here.

A man strangled and dismembered his wife, entombed her head in concrete and then used the concrete block as a weight to drown himself in a lake, Austrian authorities say.

Lake Traunsee in front of Traunstein mountain in Gmunden, Austria.
Lake Traunsee in front of Traunstein mountain in Gmunden, Austria. Photo: AP

Police official Gottfried Mitterlehner said on Tuesday the couple were a 72-year-old man and his 71-year-old wife from Germany but did not identify them further.

Officials told reporters the head was found in a block of concrete in a bag attached to the man's hand.

The man, whose body showed no signs of a struggle, was also weighed down with rocks and personal belongings.

"This makes us primarily think of an 'extended suicide'," Birgit Ahamer, a prosecutor for the nearby town of Wels, told a news conference.

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The corpse and the bag were recovered by police divers from the waters of Traunsee in central Austria on Monday.

A day earlier, two suitcases containing the woman's remains were found floating close to the lake's shore near the town of Gmunden, about 80 kilometres east of Salzburg.

AP, Reuters

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