A WOMAN arrested on suspicion of neglect and fraud as part of a police investigation into the deaths of 12 people living in care homes has been released under investigation.

She was arrested on Thursday morning and released later in the evening, Sussex Police said.

The force, which has been looking at how residents at nine care homes out of 20 run by Sussex Health Care (SHC) were treated, has not released any further information apart from confirming the woman was from West Sussex.

West Sussex County Council stopped placing people at some of the homes run by the firm.

Last week social services staff removed four people from Orchard Lodge, in Warnham near Horsham, which is one of the sites under investigation.

A council spokeswoman said this was following a "further risk assessment" and after the Care Quality Commission (CQC) placed the home in special measures when it was given an inadequate rating in September.

The council said it continued to look in detail at the services run by the firm but couldn't comment on the police investigation.

It said its priority was the safety and care of people living on homes.