Police are searching for the young daughter of a Filipina woman, whose body has been identified by next of kin while the victim’s ex boyfriend and father of the child was placed in custody.
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Crime investigators arrested a 33-year-old Romanian national on Tuesday, after the body of his former live-in girlfriend was identified by one of her close friends who reported both mother and child missing in May 2018.
The body of Marry Rose Tiburcio, aged 38, was found in a stage of saponification Sunday afternoon, with forensic pathologists failing to identify either the body or the cause of death.
Next of kin identified earring
But an earring worn by the victim was recognized by a friend, also from the Philippines, who was called in to help authorities identify the mystery corpse. According to Philenews, cops asked the Filipina to pick her friend’s earring from a pile of earrings.
'I know this earring, I gave it to her,' the Filipina friend told cops
“I know this earring, I gave it to her,” the friend reportedly said.
Marry Rose is believed to have been murdered at a different location before her body was dumped in an abandoned mine in Mitseros, Nicosia district.
The father of the child, who was arrested Tuesday afternoon on charges of premeditated murder, has denied any involvement. He told authorities that he was under the impression that his ex girlfriend and the child both had left the country.
According to media sources, police questioned another person of interest who was described as a Greek Cypriot male. The man, who was not arrested, was said to have had contact with the victim on social media.
Cyprus police are also seeking assistance from Romanian authorities regarding the 6-year-old daughter. A media outlet said investigators were focusing on information in connection with the little girl’s paternal grandparents and whether authorities could shed any light on her whereabouts.
Navy seals on stand by
But while investigators did not rule out any outcome, sources said there is a belief among law enforcement officials that the victim’s daughter might also have met her demise in a similar fashion and the perpetrator or perpetrators could have disposed of her body in the same area.
Police secured overnight the perimeter around the abandoned mine while Fire Department officials said they did not have the technical capability to pump out the water from the 100-metre well.
Unconfirmed reports said officials could call in the navy seals to search the entire elevator mine shaft. Media reports said members of the highly-trained elite forces have the capability to reach down the well to search for a possible body or clues as to the little girl’s whereabouts.
Marry Rose’s body, which was spotted by a German photographer on Sunday, had surfaced up to 15-20 metres below ground level due to rain accumulation over recent months, according to reports. But while the body was initially believed to have been dumped at the site within the last three months, officials believe her murder could have taken place earlier.
Unique smell from the well last summer
A statement given to police by a woman said she detected a unique smell coming from the well back in August 2018, when there had been no water but it was too deep. Then again in December, she saw something floating in the water but assumed it was a dead animal.
Police have been talking non-stop to witnesses connected to both the victim and the suspect, while cops also carried out a house search at the suspect’s residence.
It was reported that the suspect, who was scheduled to appear before a Nicosia judge on Wednesday for his remand hearing, had frequent fights with Marry Rose including just before she went missing in May 2018.
The suspect told police investigators that he knew nothing of what had happened to Marry Rose and that he had been waiting this last year to hear news from the police regarding his family.
Police are still waiting for lab test results and could possibly ask Marry Rose’s family in the Philippines for DNA samples before identifying the victim officially. They are also seeking camera footage around the area of the mine, asking the public to report if they ever saw any suspicious vehicles or suspicious activity.