A MURDER investigation has been launched after a man returned to his Leith home after a two-day trip to find a dead body lying in the ground floor flat.
Detectives said the victim – a man in his 30s – had suffered a “violent and brutal death” before being discovered in the flat in Dickson Street at around 9am on Saturday.
Neighbours reported hearing an argument in the street shortly before 11pm on Friday, and officers have been asking residents if they were aware of a disturbance around that time.
Police have appealed for anyone who saw suspicious activity around the flat during the last week, although they believe the murder was most likely carried out on Thursday or Friday.
It is understood the flat was rented by three Polish men who had been staying there for the last three months.
One of the flatmates had left on a trip on Thursday morning and arrived home late on Friday before going to bed. It was only the following day that he found the body and called police.
Neighbours spoke of seeing the man and his girlfriend sitting outside the main door flat holding hands as they waited for an ambulance to arrive.
Detectives were unable to confirm whether the victim lived at the address, and had still not identified him yesterday due to the condition of the body.
A post-mortem was due to be carried out yesterday to determine a cause of death while officers combed gardens and bins in a search for any weapon which may have been involved.
Gaurav Phadke, 24, a software engineer who lives next door, said: “I was in bed on Friday when I heard an argument down in the street beside that flat. It was about 10.50pm. I never got up to look out of the window but it was men shouting. I don’t know how many voices I heard. My neighbour said that she heard men arguing at about the same time.”
Another resident, who asked not to be named, said: “The police came round and asked if we heard any noises or anything unusual on Friday night.”
Forensic officers have carried out examinations of the flat and the body was removed just before midnight on Saturday in a private ambulance.
Another Dickson Street resident said: “It was three Polish guys in their 30s who had been renting the flat for the last three months.
“My husband was looking out the window at about 9am on Saturday and he saw one of them with his girlfriend sitting on the step outside. They were holding hands and had worried looks on their faces. A few minutes later police and an ambulance turned up. I assume he must have just found the body.
“There was never any bother with that flat, no noisy parties or anything. It seemed totally respectable.”
Detective Superintendent Allan Jones, who is overseeing the investigation, said: “While we have yet to formally identify the male found within the property, there is no doubt that he died a violent and brutal death.
“We are following a number of positive lines of inquiry. However, we are particularly interested in any activity in or around the flat in Dickson Street within the last week.
“We’re looking for anyone who may have seen anything suspicious in the last week. Any coming and goings at this flat, particularly any movements from Thursday morning to Friday night.”