Chinese police say they have arrested a woman and two men suspected in the murder of a Hong Kong-based British language instructor found dead in southern China.

Officers in the city of Shenzhen declined on Tuesday to elaborate on an earlier statement saying the 38-year-old woman identified by her surname Xu had killed 60-year-old Hilary St. John Bower, her boyfriend of 17 years, over a relationship dispute.

The statement said two men aged 28 and 23 assisted Xu and were arrested with her on April 8. It said the investigation was ongoing.

The British embassy in Beijing said it was supporting the family of a British national who had died in southern China and was in close contact with local investigators. No other details were given.