LONDON -- British police are hunting a man who entered an upscale London hotel room and battered three sisters from the United Arab Emirates with a hammer.
The Metropolitan Police force said Monday that all three women suffered head and facial injuries. One is in critical condition in a hospital, while the others are in serious but not life-threatening condition.
The women, in their 30s, and three children were asleep in adjoining rooms on the seventh floor of the Cumberland Hotel in London when a man entered in early Sunday. Police said the women were attacked after they awoke and disturbed the intruder. Detectives found a hammer at the scene.
Police said there had not been a security breach at the hotel and the family's room was unlocked at the time of the attack.
Detective Supt. Carl Mehta said "early indications are that theft appears to be the motive." He appealed for witnesses to come forward if they had seen a man leaving the hotel with bloody clothes.
The UAE ministry of foreign affairs said the three women were sisters.
The UAE, a former British protectorate, has long ties with the United Kingdom. Flights link multiple cities in the two countries several times a day and Emirati tourists pay frequent visits to London.
Britain recently introduced an electronic visa waiver system for citizens of the UAE, Qatar and Oman.