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Photos of honeymoon bride Michaela Harte's tragic murder were published by a Mauritius newspaper Photo by: � PA

Mauritian police raid newspaper over Michaela McAreavey crime scene photos

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Photos of honeymoon bride Michaela Harte's tragic murder were published by a Mauritius newspaper Photo by: � PA

Police in Mauritius have raided the office of the Sunday Times newspaper in Port Louis, after the publication printed a series of crime scene photos of murdered Irish woman Michaela McAreavey on Sunday.

A police spokesman said none of the staff had been questioned or arrested and none of the printed photographs had been found. He said the investigation is ongoing into the publication of the photographs. 

Michaela, McAreavey, the daughter of GAA football manager Mickey Harte was found strangled in her honeymoon suite at the Legends hotel in Mauritius in January 2011.

Photos of the 27-year-old’s dead body were printed on Sunday in what was dubbed a front-page "picture exclusive", two days after the two men charged with her murder were acquitted by the Supreme Court in Port Louis.

The photos included full-length images of Mrs McAreavey's body  and a close-up of the injuries on her neck, BBC News reports. The graphic images were published with an English written column entitled: 'Opinion -- At large, Michaela I feel sorry for you'.

According to the Irish Independent, the newspaper is mostly written in French and has an estimated circulation of 2,000 to 3,000 readers.

The newspaper has no website and the front page resembles a glossy publication with photographs sprawled across it.

In the wake of the publication of the crime scene photos, Irish deputy Prime Minister Eamon Gilmore criticized the move.

"The ambassador will in the first instance convey a strong protest to the Mauritian authorities at what appears to be the leaking of evidential material to the local media there," Gilmore said.

"He will also enquire as to what further actions will be undertaken by the authorities there to investigate the murder."

"I would consider looking at those photos to be an invasion of Michaela's privacy and the privacy of her family," he said.

Prime Minister Enda Kenny said a complaint “in the strongest possible” terms would be lodged following the publication.

A spokesperson from the couple's family said: “As the families struggle to come to terms with the result from the trial, this reprehensible and repugnant action by this newspaper is not only insensitive to their grief but it marks another low in the treatment of John, the two families and the dignity of Michaela.”

John McAreavey and his family returned to Ireland last weekend following the murder trial in Mauritius which lasted almost two months.

The two former hotel employees Avinash Treebhoowoon (32) and Sandip Moneea (43), were unanimously acquitted  of the murder last Thursday.

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