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24 January, 2022
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More arrests after body dug up in Athienou

Main suspect denies murder allegations, police say they have evidence but keep a tight lid


Two more suspects have been arrested after a body was dug up in a field in the buffer zone, with new details raising more questions and police keeping a tight lid on a launched murder investigation.

Police on Tuesday evening arrested two foreign nationals aged 31 and 36, in connection with a dead body that was spotted in the morning on a piece of farmland along the Athienou-Louroujina road, Larnaca district, within the UN buffer zone. Another suspect was apprehended earlier in connection with the case.

There were conflicting reports as to the circumstances of the body discovery, with a local farmer saying he used his tractor on Monday night but had not seen anything out of the ordinary. Local media reported that the body was unearthed after it was caught by the plow of a tractor.

Police believe the woman, described by some media as a sex worker, was killed months earlier in Nicosia and her body was wrapped in a blanket and dumped in a sewer

Officials said the next morning a citizen, who saw a bag and some clothes, notified an acquaintance, who was a police officer, who inspected the find and determined it was a mummified body.

After police officers rushed to the scene, reports said investigators received information that led them to a main suspect, described as a 32-year-old Egyptian national who works in a different district. 

Additional reports said the body is believed to have belonged to a woman, possibly a European national, with whom the male suspect had a relationship. 

Police believe the victim, described by some media as a female sex worker, was killed at least five months earlier in Nicosia and her body was wrapped in a blanket and dumped in a sewer near the southern entrance of the capital.

Investigators, who reportedly have additional evidence in the case, believe the body was recently transported to the buffer zone and buried there, with the three suspects facing murder or conspiracy charges.

But police stopped short of commenting on possible motives or revealing how investigators identified the main suspect, who reportedly denied murder charges after he was arrested Tuesday afternoon. 

A new forensic report on the body, including more definitive information about gender, is expected Wednesday morning following a post mortem scheduled for 10am.

Meanwhile, the three suspects who appeared before a Nicosia judge on Wednesday morning were all ordered in remanded in custody for eight days.

Cyprus  |  Larnaca  |  Nicosia  |  Athienou  |  buffer zone  |  body dug up  |  police  |  murder  |  crime  |  Egyptian  |  farmer  |  sex worker  |  prostitute  |  European

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