An American man has been charged with murder after allegedly admitting to fatally stabbing and dismembering his French wife in their Mediterranean coastal vacation home before the couple was scheduled to return to Indonesia where they lived and worked.

Billy Kruger, a French-American man from Brooklyn, appeared in court in southwest France on Sunday where he was indicted on an aggravated murder charge, pending a possible trial, said Marie-Agnès Joly, a prosecutor in the city of Narbonne. He was detained at the Toulouse-Blagnac Airport on Friday before he could board a flight bound for Jakarta.

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French police stand next to a storm drain where the body of Laure Bardina-Kruger was found, in Peyriac de Mer, southern France, Friday, July 24, 2020. (AP Photo/Christophe Barreau)

French police stand next to a storm drain where the body of Laure Bardina-Kruger was found, in Peyriac de Mer, southern France, Friday, July 24, 2020. (AP Photo/Christophe Barreau)

The man allegedly told investigators that he was acting in self-defense when he stabbed his wife, 52-year-old Laure Bardina-Kruger, twice during an argument in their vacation home in Peyriac-de-Mer, on the Mediterranean coast, south of Narbonne.

Bardina-Kruger’s father, who lives in the same French region, called police after the couple failed to telephone him or come for a visit before their scheduled flight back to Indonesia, Reuters reported, citing Agence France-Presse. Law enforcement who arrived at the pair’s vacation home in Peyriac-de-Mer found the wife’s luggage. Her dismembered body was located in a storm drain nearby.

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Kruger worked as a diving instructor in Indonesia, the Associated Press reported, citing local newspaper La Dépêche du Midi. His wife taught French at the Jakarta Intercultural School, according to her LinkedIn page. The couple is said to have vacationed several weeks of the year at their holiday home in Peyriac-de-Mer.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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