Body found in bin liner, police launch manhunt
POLICE launched a murder hunt after the badly decomposed body of a woman was found wrapped in a blanket and a black bin liner just 1km from Ercan airport, on scrub land 20-30 metres off the Gaziköy road.
Detectives from Lefkoşa and Demirhan combed the area after the grisly find at 3pm on Sunday.
The first murder case of 2019 sees yet another female victim in a rising tally of extreme violence against women.
Three out of eight murder victims last year and five out of nine in 2017 were women, while cases of anti-female violence numbered 305 in 2017 and 372 in 2018.
Reliable sources said the woman had been stabbed multiple times and that the corpse was at least five months old.
The post mortem examination at Lefkoşa State Hospital confirmed that the victim was female, with long dark hair, and forensic evidence was collected from the blanket.
Police confirmed yesterday that they were treating the case as a murder but could not confirm the victim’s identity or time of death.
Investigations are focused on the strong possibility that the victim could be a Vietnamese home carer who disappeared on Monday, October 15, 2017.
Dam Thi Hop, 40, had worked in South Cyprus for two years before crossing to the North to care for a Gönyeli woman at her home.
She was listed as missing in a November 2017 police report after she failed to return to the home of her employer, who handed over her passport, personal belongings and money to police. No records could be found showing that she had returned to South Cyprus.
According to press reports, Dam Thi Hop had told her closest friend, Pham Thi Phuoung, by phone that she was on her way to meet her at Girne Gate on the day she disappeared.
When she failed to arrive, her friend phoned back but the mobile phone was initially engaged, then shut down and she was not seen again.
Reports said three of her friends were called to police headquarters on Tuesday, when Pham Thi Phuoung was shown photos and a T-shirt and hat from the scene which she identified as belonging to Dam Thi Hop.
She told reporters her friend’s family in Vietnam was distraught at her disappearance and felt police had not done enough to find her.
A Vietnamese man who had met Dam Thi Hop on the day she vanished was also questioned.
The decomposed body was found wrapped in a blanket and a black bin liner 1km from Ercan airport