Russian federal investigators say they are probing the murder of a former police officer and five family members who were found dead in a provincial town over the weekend.

Russian media are reporting that Andrei Gosht and his relatives were discovered dead in their home Sunday in Syzran, a village some 620 miles (1,000 kilometers) southeast of Moscow. They were apparently killed by blunt-force trauma.

According to the reports, Gosht's seven-year-old niece was the only family member who survived. She was hospitalized with heavy trauma injuries.

The federal investigative committee's Vladimir Markin told the Interfax news agency that the brutality and calculated nature of the murders resemble the grisly 2010 killings of twelve people in a village in Russia's southern Krasnodar region, which were carried out by a criminal gang.