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33° Nicosia,
18 September, 2019
 
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Filipina who escaped Orestis speaks out

Survivor says alleged serial killer was well mannered, persistent, tried to lure her into his car

Newsroom

New information emerged about the alleged serial killer, with another woman from the Philippines coming forward with shocking details of how she escaped alleged serial killer Nikos Metaxas days before the first body discovery.

The primary suspect in the serial killer case, known by his alias Orestis, approached a potential victim exactly one week before the first body discovery, according to allegations by a Filipina who spoke with ANT1 Greece earlier this week.

The woman, who remained anonymous, says she could have been Orestis’ next victim had she not kept her guard up during an encounter on April 11 at a supermarket downtown Nicosia. She said Orestis started a conversation with her, exchanging pleasantries and asking where she was from, exactly one week before his arrest and only a few days before a group of bikers found the first body in an abandoned mine shaft.

“He walked with me from Debenhams until the bus terminal,” the woman said, who described Orestis as polite but also with devilish eyes.

Filipina says she could have been Orestis’ next victim had she not kept her guard up during a supermarket encounter in Nicosia

“He asked me how much money I made and I told him six euro per hour,” the Filipina told the investigative journalist over the phone.

The suspect, who is believed to have lured at least some of his victims by promising them well-paid part time work, told the woman that money was not an obstacle and asked her to go with him in his car.

“He wanted me to go with him but I told him ‘no, no, I don’t want’ because I had a job, and then he said he could pay me more money and even offered to take me to the supermarket where he would buy whatever I wanted,” she said.

“If you see him, he looks like a nice person but his eyes are not nice, they are like the devil,” she added.

Promises of part time work

Orestis is believed to have made similar offers to other foreign women, including some of the slain victims he allegedly murdered. Previous reports suggested that at least two Filipinas and one woman from Nepal, whom the suspect reportedly confessed to killing them, may have been lured by the promise of part time work to earn extra money.

In one case, 30-year-old Asmita Khadka Bista from Nepal is believed to have been murdered just outside west Nicosia after she was seen entering a white vehicle in July 2018. She was reportedly in search of summer work, after leaving her workplace citing privacy concerns according to earlier reports. Her visa status had allowed her a brief period to secure employment, which later prompted her employment agency to report her to immigration for “abandonment of employment” after a 30-day grace period expired.

Orestis led investigators to open fields in rural Nicosia where reportedly he had hidden cable wires and other objects that he used to get rid of the bodies of his alleged victims. Reports said police may have some phone location data that corroborate the scenario he has presented to investigators, while other reports pointed out that at least one phone thought to have been used to communicate with victims and even record footage of possible crimes has been destroyed.

Media reports also said Orestis is thought to have destroyed evidence as soon as it was announced on the news that the body of 38-year-old Filipina Marry Rose Tiburcio was discovered in Mitseros on April 18. Marry Rose’s corpse was tossed down a flooded and abandoned mine shaft, naked, bound at the feet, and wrapped in a blanket, while her young daughter is still missing and presumed dead. Days later the body of another Filipina, 28-year-old Αrian Palanas Lozano was also found in the same place under similar circumstances. The bodies of a Romanian woman and her young daughter, who went missing in September 2016, were also dumped in the red lake in suitcases right across from the mine shaft. The two bodies have been recovered while the body of Maricar Valdez Arquiola, who disappeared in December 2017, is also believed to be in the same watery grave.

Israeli divers join lake search

Israeli divers who arrived this week in Cyprus to assist with the search effort said that the toxicity levels at the red lake were dangerous. They are reportedly assisting in the search of 6-year-old Sierra, Marry Rose’s daughter, whose body was dumped in Memi Lake according to Orestis, a few miles west of the mine shaft where her mother was dumped.

Police are no longer searching for more victims beyond the seven murders that Orestis has reportedly admitted to investigators. Following fierce criticism of the police accusing officers of failing to take complaints of missing women seriously, officials maintained that they are focusing on building a solid case against the suspect while an independent probe will look into possible wrongdoing by authorities.

Orestis is expected to go straight to criminal trial next week unless a new remand is requested and approved by a court.

The woman who spoke out about her encounter with Orestis has reportedly expressed concern at the prospect that the suspect may walk free, saying “he knows me” and that he is a very dangerous man.

Rumours of Orestis withdrawing his confession have been a point of discussion over the last few days, with experts pointing out that police investigators were in a hurry to gather as much evidence from him as possible that could be uncontested in court even if he withdraws his confession or pleas not guilty.

- Marry Rose Tiburcio, 38, Philippines (DNA confirmed)
- Sierra Graze Seucalliuc, 6, Philippines (missing, feared dead)
- Αrian Palanas Lozano, 28, Philippines (DNA confirmed)
- Maricar Valdez Arquiola, 30, Philippines (missing, presumed dead)
- Livia Florentina Bunea, 36, Romania (body identified)
- Elena Natalia Bunea, 8, Romania (body found)
- Asmita Khadka Bista, 30, Nepal (DNA pending)

TAGS
Cyprus  |  Orestis  |  serial killer  |  Metaxas  |  Filipina  |  murders  |  red lake  |  mine shaft  |  Mitseros

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