Body found in bin liner, po­lice launch man­hunt

Cyprus Today - - NEWS - By ANNE CANALP

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

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