Monica and Thomas bar
Monica Spear and her ex-husband Thomas Berry pictured at a bar. Facebook

Miss Venezuela Monica Spear and her British ex-husband Thomas Berry were trying to rekindle their romance before they were gunned down in a roadside robbery in Venezuela, it has emerged.

The former beauty queen and travel firm boss Berry were killed when their car broke down on an isolated road between Valencia and Puerto Cabello.

Their five-year-old daughter Maya was shot in the leg but survived the attack. She was taken to hospital where family and friends were helping to care for her.

Police in Venezuela have since arrested five men, including two who were said to be under 18, in connection with the murders. They are believed to belong to a gang called Los Rapiditos — Spanish for The Quick Ones.

Spear and Berry, who tied the knot in June 2008, were on a family holiday following more than a year's estrangement at the time of the attack. They had chosen to visit Venezuela so Maya could learn about the country.

According to Ms Spear's father, Rafael Spear, the pair were devoted to their daughter and had remained close friends following their split in 2013.

"They truly loved each other, and their daughter only cemented their love," said Rafael, who had flown in from his home in Orlando to attend his daughter's funeral.

"We all expected them to return from holiday with the news that they were back together again".

Spear and Berry's funeral are scheduled due to take place on Saturday in Caracas. They will be later be laid to rest side by side.

Close friend Luis Navarro said: "They were together in life and they will be together in death. It is the family wishes that they be buried side by side."