An Austalian father gassed himself and his family after his wife discovered his affair with a 17-year-old Filipina and demanded a divorce.
Maria Lutz, aged 43, Fernando Manrique, 44, and their children Elisa, 11, and Martin, 10, were found dead, along with the family’s pet dog, in their Sydney home in October 2016.
Mr Manrique is believed to have set up a system of pipes in the ceiling to spray odourless carbon monoxide gas throughout the house.
At the opening of an inquest today (Monday, April 8), Coroner Adam Casselden said the businessman was seeing the teenager for four months before the gassing.
The girl, named Jamilyn, told Australian police they met at a bar she worked in and after two weeks he told her to quit her job. She said Mr Manrique promised to support her and buy her a house, but this never happened.
When Ms Lutz discovered the affair she demanded a divorce from the crumbling marriage, the inquest at Lidcombe Coroners Court was told.
Ms Lutz kicked her husband out of the family home in September 2016 after an argument.
He was allowed to return the following month but by then is believed to have concocted his plan, having ordered two gas canisters.
Police forced their way in to the house on Sydney’s northern beaches on October 17 after the family didn’t turn up to work and school.
Mr Manrique’s body was in the living room, Ms Lutz and Elisa next to each other in a bedroom and Martin in a third room beside their bull mastiff Tequila.
Detective Sergeant Timothy Pooley told the inquest the alleged killer owed the Australian Tax Office more than $15,000 and $28,000 on his credit card.
However, despite the family’s dire finances, Mr Manrique was still blowing cash on expensive gifts for various girlfriends around Asia he visited during work trips.
Coroner Casselden said as well as investigating the deaths, the inquest would examine whether tighter restrictions on buying poisonous gasses are necessary.
The inquest continues.
For a longer account of today’s opening evidence, visit MailOnline.
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