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John Luper who was murdered in 2004

John Luper who was murdered in 2004

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The family of a man murdered nine years ago this week have issued an emotional appeal to Spen people, who may hold the key to his killers’ identities, to come forward.

Businessman John Luper died following a robbery at his home in Leeds, but detectives believe the answer to what happened could lie in Liversedge.

The rare Cartier watch which was stolen during the robbery at the Luper house.

The rare Cartier watch which was stolen during the robbery at the Luper house.

Det Chief Insp Simon Atkinson, from West Yorkshire Police’s Homicide and Major Enquiry Team, has vowed to bring the killers to justice.

“In the nine years since the robbery we have received some very useful information from the public, but I believe there are a number of people with more to say,” he said.

“I am sure members of the criminal fraternity will have suspicions about who was responsible and I call on them to come forward and provide that vital piece of information.”

Mr Luper, 57, was found dead by his family in the kitchen of their home in the early hours of February 17, 2004.

Detectives believe he was attacked by four or five masked men as he walked his dog near his neighbour’s driveway just before midnight, before being dragged back to his home.

Jewellery and cash worth around £100,000 was taken including a rare Cartier watch – one of only four sold in the UK around the time and police want to hear from anyone who may have been offered one.

Mr Luper’s wife, daughter and au pair were tied up with duct tape and left in an upstairs bedroom before the robbers fled. After freeing themselves they came downstairs and found Mr Luper on the kitchen floor. Police, who were called to the scene, tried to revive him, but he died of ashpyxiation.

Despite an appeal on the BBC’s Crimewatch programme and a number of extensive searches at the derelict Thornbush Farm in Hightown, no one has been charged in connection with the murder.

Mr Luper’s brother Toby said: “John’s death continues to have a devastating impact on our entire family. His loss has left a huge void in all our lives. “

Anyone with information can contact West Yorkshire Police’s Homicide and Major Enquiry Team on 01924 334682 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.