A Newfoundlander found dead in an Edmonton home this weekend hired the two construction workers who now stand accused of murdering him, a relative says.

Jamie Vickers, 35, was found dead early New Year's Eve in a rented house that his family says he shared with two other Newfoundlanders, who have each been charged with second-degree murder in his death.


Edmonton police found the body of Jamie Vickers in this house on Saturday. (CBC)

Police in Alberta have charged Paul Raymond Gill, 44, from Springdale and William John Tubrett, 47, from St. John's with second-degree murder in the death of Vickers.

His cousin, Ken Vickers, told CBC News Tuesday that Vickers had worked with the men last summer in his home community of Witless Bay, just south of St. John's.

"Jamie must have figured they were pretty good workers — he took them away with him. Paid their way up, looked out for them [and] rented the house," Vickers said.

An autopsy had been scheduled to be performed Tuesday.

"There's no way for anybody to prepare for something like this," said Ken Vickers, adding that the death has shocked people in Witless Bay.

He said his cousin was planning to settle back in his hometown, and was building a house for himself and his parents. "This was going to be his dream home," he said.