With the return of Unsolved Mysteries on Netflix, interest around the nearly decade-old case in the third episode has made a comeback.
Published nine years after the massacre, the special issue of Society magazine explored the strange character that is Xavier Dupont de Ligonnès and the trail of clues the man left behind him. Within hours of hitting the shelves, the magazine ran out of stock, proving that the French are still seeking answers about one of France's most wanted fugitives.
Society wasn't the only media outlet interested in the murders of 5 members of the Dupont de Ligonnès family. In fact, in 2017, in the book Sans pitié pour les siens published by L’Archipel, journalists Béatrice Fonteneau and Jean-Michel Laurence wrote about the murders of Agnes and her 4 children Thomas, Anne, Benoît, and Arthur.
In it, we learn that Xavier Dupont de Ligonnès is passionate about film and literature. His favourite genre: thrillers of all kinds, with a preference for authors Ken Follet, Bernard Minier, and Harlan Coben. The two journalists came up with a theory that is as wild as it is plausible.
What were the detective stories about?
The first book mentioned in Béatrice Fonteneau and Jean-Michel Laurence's theory is Fall of Giants by Ken Follet, Xavier Dupont de Ligonnès’s favourite author. In it, the main character drops everything to move to the United States as he is hunted down by the police. Many of the people close to the former father testified that he loved the US, and they believe that if he ran off anywhere abroad, it must be there.
The second book is Harlan Coban's Gone Forever. The protagonist is accused of murder and explains how he changed his identity, how to clean up traces of blood, and how to secretly communicate over the internet. The police spent 11 years looking for him.
The third thriller, which has disturbing similarities to the Dupont de Ligonnès case, is The Frozen Dead by Bernard Minier. This book was spotted in Xavier Dupont de Ligonnès's hands in the last video surveillance images recovered by the police. In the book, the main character suggests undergoing cosmetic surgery to go unrecognized.
Since the search for Xavier Dupont de Ligonnès started, there has been a lot of talk of body modification, and many people have been mistaken for one of France's most wanted fugitives.
For more information, check out the video above.