A former Scotland Yard anti-terrorist officer feared he had killed himself has parted ways with his partner and was questioned by police over a “domestic incident”.
Malcolm Baker, 60, died after a fire destroyed his home in Brompton Regis in Exmoor National Park around 6pm on September 14.
His partner pig farmer Francesca Onody was not on the property at the time of the devastating fire.
MailOnline has found that Mr Baker had resigned from two deals he had held with her in May this year.
He is shown to have been quit as a director of the farming company Exmoor Smallholdings and Exmoor Charcuterie.
And he had been approached by Avon and Somerset Police over an alleged “domestic incident” at the property.
The force has referred this prior contact to the Independent Bureau of Police Conduct for possible investigation.
Mr Baker had had a distinguished career with the force, investigating the poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko and the July 7 bombing in London.
Malcolm Baker (pictured) died after a fire destroyed his home in Exmoor National Park around 6pm on September 14
Mr Baker’s home, Hiccombe House, in Brompton Regis, West Somerset, which was destroyed in the fire
The fire resulted in an explosion that could be heard from a mile away and destroyed the roof of the property, The Sun reports.
After a search led by specialists, human remains were subsequently found in the ruins of the house.
DNA testing is underway to confirm the victim is Mr Baker.
Neighbors are said to have assumed that a gas cylinder had been opened on purpose and initially feared that he had been the victim of a terrorist attack.
A police spokesman told MailOnline: “Searches carried out following a fire at a house in Brompton Regis, Exmoor on September 14 have resulted in human remains being found.
“We believe these remains are those of a resident of the home, a man in his 60s, and we are conducting inquiries on behalf of the Coroner’s Office to help with formal identification. A family liaison officer has been keeping the man’s next of kin updated and we will continue to keep them informed.
Mr Baker was also part of the team investigating the poisoning of Mr Litvinenko (pictured) in 2006
The wreckage of the number 30 double decker bus is pictured in Tavistock Square, central London, after July 7th
“We can confirm that we are investigating this incident as a criminal offense of arson with intent to endanger life, but at this time we do not believe a third party is involved and we are not looking for anyone else in connection with our investigation.
“Avon and Somerset Police have previously made a mandatory referral to the Independent Bureau of Police Conduct as a result of a previous contact with the police.”
The IOPC said: “We can confirm that we have received a referral from Avon and Somerset Police concerning a previous police contact in relation to inmates at an address in Brompton Regis where a serious fire broke out on September 14.
“We are currently reviewing the referral to determine whether an investigation by the IOPC is required.”
Up to 30 officers meticulously combed the property for evidence after the blast, with residents recalling a loud bang and plumes of smoke billowing into the air.
Withiel Fox, 60, told The Sun: “There is no gas supply to this cottage so it didn’t happen by accident. Because of his background, there has been much speculation as to what may have happened.
“He went missing after the blast and there were concerns that the Russians might be behind it. There were fears they may have kidnapped or killed him to send a message to the government.’
Mr. Baker worked on a number of high-profile cases, including assisting US officials in an investigation into the September 11, 2001 atrocities.
He was also part of the team that investigated Mr Litvinenko’s poisoning in 2006. European judges ruled last year that the Russian state was responsible for his murder.
Mr Baker also investigated the 7/7 London bombings in 2005 which killed 56 people.
He also held a security role at the London 2012 Olympics before retiring from the police force.
He is believed to have been working as a security adviser before his death, having moved to the area from London with his partner.
Avon and Somerset Police say they referred his death to the independent Police Misconduct Bureau due to a previous contact of a domestic nature.
It comes as another resident told the neighbor Mr Baker was “not a pleasant man”, adding that he was “obnoxious and a bully and had quarreled with several local residents”.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11254091/Ex-terror-cop-stepped-businesses-ran-girlfriend-killed-explosion.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Ex-terror cop resigned from deals he had with his girlfriend before being killed in an explosion