THE family of a 30-year-old man found hanging in his home have accused police of failing to carry out a comprehensive investigation.

Over a year after Ismail Coskun, a Mortlake resident, died his family have questioned the way Richmond police dealt with the case.

"The police shouldn't decide he killed himself without knowing about him and then destroy the evidence," said Hatice Coskun, Ismail's mother, a Hampton resident.

The handyman was found by police hanging by picture wire from a plank of wood resting between two door frames in his flat in Clifford Avenue on June 26, 2003. Officers were alerted to the incident by a neighbour who had noticed a smell coming from the flat. Forensic investigations suggested he had been there for anything up to a week.

At the coroners inquiry into Ismail's death, held last week at West London Coroners court, it emerged that evidence removed from the scene by the police had been destroyed earlier this year.

Speaking through an interpreter Mrs Coskun, originally from Turkey, said: "We are asking why the evidence taken from the scene was destroyed. We want to know how the police can have decided it was suicide without talking to the parents and family. And we want to know why it took two days for the family to be informed."

The family remain convinced the scene of their son's death was too clinical and the police investigation immediately ruled out anything other than suicide.

During the inquest the court heard how Ismail had a history of mental health problems and was being treated for depression. He had a tense relationship with his family, running away from home at the age of 15.

The last person to see Ismail alive, an uncle, was told he was going on holiday with his girlfriend. At the time of his death the family claim Ismail was happy, looking forward to buying his flat and, with the help of his parents, setting up a business.

"The year of his death he seemed to be more close with his family," added Sinan Coskun, Ismail's brother.

In court PC Caroline Wilson admitted the evidence from the scene had been destroyed. She said: "I thought the case had finished. It was a misunderstanding on my part."

Coroner, Elizabeth Pygott, concluded that Ismail had died by hanging. She added that she did not believe he was in a sound enough state of mind to say he had killed himself.

A toxicology report stated Ismail had three times the legal drink drive level of alcohol in his body when he was found, although this may have increased during the period between his death and his body being discovered.

A police spokesman said: "Twickenham police are concerned the family are not happy with the manner in which the case was managed and will be looking into the matter. They will respond to the family directly."