British restaurant owner shot dead by hunters in French Alps named

A British restaurant owner who was reportedly shot and killed by hunters while mountain-biking in the French Alps has been named.

French ski resort Les Gets confirmed on Monday that the victim was Marc Sutton, who owned a local health food restaurant called Wild Beets Kitchen.

In a statement to the Press Association, Les Gets said the 34-year-old lived in Essert-Romand.

A spokesman said: “Everyone’s thoughts are currently with his family and close friends.

“An official inquiry is under way into the circumstances surrounding it.”

Mr Sutton posted on social media earlier this year that he had bought a restaurant with Jo Watts and the Wild Beets Kitchen announced its opening on June 19.

In a blog post on the restaurant’s website it said the pair had fallen in love with the region nearly 10 years ago after spending their first ski season there.

It added: “We first came to Morzine in 2009 for our first ski season and absolutely fell in love with the place and the lifestyle.

“After travelling and working just the winter seasons here for five years we decided to make the permanent move and call the area our home.

“We have now been living, working and owning a business here for the last three years full time, starting with our catering company ‘Chez Toi’.”

Tributes were paid to the outdoor enthusiast on the restaurant’s Facebook page.

‎Marjoline Barge said: “All my condolences to the family, long life at this restaurant… RIP Marc.”

Robin Behan added: “My deepest sympathies to all of you.”

French prosecutors said Mr Sutton, originally from Caerphilly in South Wales, had been cycling down a mountain in the Montriond area at around 6pm on Saturday when he passed close to a group of hunters.

Philippe Toccanier, prosecutor for the Thonon-Les-Bains region, told the Associated Press that Mr Sutton’s death was believed to be an accident.

Mr Toccanier said he certainly “couldn’t be confused with game, as he had a coloured helmet and a coloured mountain bike”.

A 22-year-old man was taken to hospital suffering from shock and is being investigated on suspicion of aggravated manslaughter, according to AP.

The Foreign Office said: “We are in contact with the local authorities about the death of a British man in France, and we are providing assistance to his family.”