UK news sources are confirming that one of Britain's wealthiest women Eva Rausing has been found dead - possibly killed by a drug overdose.
The identity of the body, believed to be Ms. Rausing's - wife of Hans Kristian Rausing of the renowned, Swedish-descended business family behind the tetra pak drinks cartons - and found at their flat in Cadogan Place, Belgravia, London, has been confirmed.
A 49 year old man, now known to be her husband, was arrested in connection with her death and on suspicion of drugs offences.
He was earlier held at a police station but has now been transferred to a medical facility.
In 2008 Mrs. Rausing, an American, and her husband were both charged with possession of Class A drugs.
Mrs Rausing was also charged with possession of a Class C drug.
According to a Telegraph article, the couple met at a drug rehabilitation center in the US in the early 1990s.
"Mrs Rausing and her 49-year-old husband have both fought lengthy battles with drug addiction" says that report.
A Scotland Yard source had earlier said: “On Monday 9 July a 49-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of possession of drugs. Following a subsequent search of an address in Cadogan Place SW1, a body was found.
“The death is being treated as unexplained. We believe we know the identity of the deceased but await further confirmation. The man was further arrested in connection with the death and is currently in custody at a south London police station.”
Mrs Rausing was born Eva Kemeny and is the daughter of a wealthy Pepsi Cola executive .
"The Kemeny family live on Hilton Head Island, an idyllic spot off South Carolina known for it's beaches and annual wine tasting festival." says the Telegaph article.
It also says that her younger sister Be Kemeny used to be married to Jack Kidd, the polo playing brother of model Jodie Kidd and lives in a beach house on the island with her children.
"The family could not be contacted for comment.", it continues.
The Rausing family is worth an estimated £4.5 billion and were ranked as Britain’s 12th richest family in the Sunday Times Rich List of 2011.
According to the Telegraph the billionaire couple "shared their time between London and Barbados, where they own an 11 bedroom beachfront mansion worth £15 million."
Some time ago the travel writer Lucretia Stewart devoted a paragraph of an article on Barbados to the Rausings' investment in property there.
She wrote "There’s something about Barbados, the air perhaps, which makes people want to leave their mark. The way foreigners do that is by building what in certain American circles is now referred to as a 'McMansion'. Something big. Something expensive."
" The house which the 'young' Rausings (heirs to the Tetra-Pac fortune) have just completed" she wrote "is rumoured to have cost $30m."
Stewart noted that the couple "already owned Nelson Gay, the house next door to Cobbler’s Cove, which they had bought in the mid-Nineties after the death of its owner, Eric Estorick, the art dealer whose collection of modern Italian art is housed at the Estorick Collection in London."
But the Rausings wanted their own place, she notes, something they had created, so they bought some land near Barbados' renowned Sandy Lane resort, where an old hotel called Greensleeves and some other buildings stood.
"They demolished the old buildings and built a mansion, which, by all accounts, has to be seen to be believed." says Stewart, offering a useful insight into the creative character of the wealthy couple.
But she adds "You can’t, in fact, see it at all from the road - a narrow, congested, accident-strewn strip that winds up the coast from Bridgetown to Speighstown - because it is hidden behind a high wall. Millionaires always want high walls; they want privacy."
Then, perhaps prophetically - certainly cryptically - she opines "But high walls are not part of the Barbados tradition."
Eva and her husband have four children, aged between 11 and 17, who attend a private school in East Sussex.
This writer's and other Barbadians' thoughts will be with them and other members of the Rausing family at this difficult time of loss.
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