The Two-Way
11:25 am
Tue January 3, 2012

Body Found On Queen Elizabeth II's Country Estate

A dog walker found a body on Queen Elizabeth II's Sandringham estate in Norfolk, England. The royals spend the holidays every year on the sprawling, 20,000-acre estate.

The Norfolk Constabulary issued a statement saying the female body was found on Sunday, while the Royals were at home, and that the office has launched a murder investigation.

ABC News reports:

"'We are at the very early stages of the investigation and it could be a complex inquiry,' Detective Chief Inspector Jes Fry said at a news conference today at the queen's Sandringham Estate in Norfolk, England. 'The circumstances suggest this is a murder case and we are looking at missing persons reports and cold cases both locally and nationwide.'

"The human remains were found near the Royal Stud where the queen oversees the breeding and training of race horses, and less than three miles from the queen's main residence, Sandringham House.

"'The body had been there for some time,' Fry said, adding that authorities were doing a post-mortem today on the body."

ABC also spoke to Duncan Larcombe, royal editor for The Sun, who said this might be the first time a murder takes place on royal grounds.

As the AP explains, some parts of Sandrigham are accesible to the public:

"The hamlet of Anmer is home to several dozen people and sits around three miles (4.8 kilometers) from Sandringham House, which has served as a private residence for British monarchs since 1862. Queen Elizabeth II and her husband Prince Philip spent part of the holiday season there and were at Sandringham House on New Year's Day.

"Sandringham Estate's website says the entire estate is spread over 8,000 hectares (19,768 acres) in Norfolk. Sandringham House and its gardens make up 24 hectares (59 acres), and there are 240 hectares (590 acres) of woods and open countryside in a section that is open to the public free of charge all year."

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.