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London - A British expatriate has been found beaten to death in a suspected burglary in the Bahamas.

The body of personal trainer Dannie Lea, 29, dressed in his underwear, was discovered on the lawn of a property in a gated community in the capital, Nassau.

He had been beaten over the head. Local media reported that the owners of the house where Mr Lea’s body was found had been away. Relatives noticed the home’s door was ajar and a security guard was called to investigate.

He discovered Mr Lea barefoot and wearing only his underpants, in the garden.

Mr Lea, originally from Stoke-on-Trent, was pronounced dead at the scene.

No arrests have been made and police have launched a murder inquiry. On Tuesday Mr Lea’s ex-girlfriend, who wished to remain anonymous, told MailOnline: ‘Dannie was a kind and gentle-natured man with a young son and large family.

‘The Bahamian press online paper has disclosed various statements including that the killer was on the run.’

Mr Lea is thought to have been working as an oil engineer and a personal trainer in Nassau when he became the 34th murder victim this year in the Bahamas.

News of his death emerged yesterday, although he was found dead at the property in eastern New Providence at around 5pm on Sunday, May 19. Mr Lea, who previously ran a store selling health supplements in his home town, was thought to be splitting his time between the UK and the Bahamas while trying to make it as an actor.

According to The Sun, he was a reformed character who had previously served 30 months in prison for dealing cocaine. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office is supporting Mr Lea’s family.

The Royal Bahamas Police Force said: ‘Police have officially identified the male who was discovered dead on Sunday May 19 at Port New Providence as Dannie Lea, aged 29 of Great Britain. An autopsy will be performed to determine the exact cause of his death. Investigations are ongoing.’

On Tuesday night friends of Mr Lea paid tribute online.

Lisa Dulson said: ‘Devastated for all the family, sending you all thoughts and prayers Dannie was a gorgeous young man.’ Elaine Ward wrote: ‘RIP Dannie you will be missed by so many people.’

Daily Mail