Rickey Bibey was found dead in the hotel room a stone's throw away from Ponte del Vecchio. Photo taken when he played for Wigan Warriors in 2003

Ex-rugby star Ricky Bibey, 40, is found dead in four-star £350-a-night Italy hotel room alongside ‘seriously injured 43-year-old woman’

  • Former sports star, who was working as an estate agent, died in posh hotel room
  • Woman, 43, hospitalised with injuries after incident yesterday morning
  • Paramedics raced to hotel, a stone’s throw from famous Ponte Vecchio bridge

Rickey Bibey was found dead in the hotel room a stone’s throw away from Ponte del Vecchio. Photo taken when he played for Wigan Warriors in 2003

Former rugby league star Ricky Bibey, 40, has been found dead in a £350-a-night riverside hotel in Florence, Italy.

The ex-sportsman, who retired from the game in 2012 and was working as an estate agent, died after a seizure yesterday morning.

He arrived in the picturesque city with Jennifer Platt, 43, on Friday night.

They arrived back at the Hotel Continentale ‘in high spirits’ at 2am on Saturday.

But after spending time together in their hotel room, Bibey suffered a seizure.

Ms Platt was found bloodied and bruised and has now been taken to hospital. 

Bibey’s former team, Wakefield Trinity, wrote on Twitter this morning: ‘Trinity are saddened to hear of the passing of former prop-forward Ricky Bibey, aged 40.

‘We send our condolences to Ricky’s family and friends at this tough time.’

Ms Platt has been hospitalised with injuries after she was found with cuts and bruises.

Paramedics raced to the hotel, a stone’s throw from the famous Ponte Vecchio bridge.

Emergency services vehicles gathered outside the hotel yesterday after the tragic death

Ex-rugby star Rickey was working as an estate agent after retiring. Pictured playing for Wakefield Trinity Wildcats against Catalans Dragons

Police said they’re still trying to determine the exact cause of death and injury to the woman

The woman was taken to the city’s Careggi hospital where she was said to be in a serious but stable condition.

The couple had only arrived at the hotel on Friday night and the alarm was raised early on Saturday morning.

A police source told MailOnline: ‘The people involved are both British and at the moment we are working on two theories an erotic game that went wrong or some sort of domestic argument, but the general direction is that of an erotic game.

‘The man was found with a series of cuts, bruises and other injuries on his body and so was the woman, although she was more seriously hurt and the man appears to have had some sort of seizure.

The hotel is a few minutes’ walk from the heart of the city which is popular with British tourists

Investigators consult their notes as they probe the death and injury at the swish hotel

‘Forensic teams are working there at the moment’, police said yesterday

‘There is blood in the room and the forensic teams are working there at the moment while the woman has been taken to hospital for treatment.

‘Her current condition is serious but she is stable and her injuries are not life-threatening. We hope to question her at some point in the next few hours.’

Sources said the couple were from Manchester and ran an upmarket estate agent and they had arrived at the hotel late Friday night.

The pair went out shortly after arriving on Friday and returned just before 2am on Saturday with witnesses saying they were in ‘high spirits’.

Police sources said the woman had a child through a previous relationship but was not married to the man who died.

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By Jon Doe