Wednesday 22 November 2017

Video: Suitcase murder victim was suffocated and dumped alongside rubbish bins

The scene at Blackhorse Avenue in Dublin
Gardai at the scene following the discovery of a body of a woman in large holdall at St David’s Terrace, Blackhorse Avenue, Dublin. Photo: Collins
Garda and forensic officers at the scene off Blackhorse Avenue in Dublin. Photo: PA
Garda and forensic officers at the scene off Blackhorse Avenue in Dublin. Photo: PA
Garda and forensic officers at the scene off Blackhorse Avenue in Dublin. Photo: PA

Tom Brady and Colm Kelpie

GARDAI believe the woman’s body discovered dumped in a suitcase near the Phoenix Park yesterday, is that of an African student who was suffocated and her body was deliberately dumped near bins in the hope it would be collected as rubbish.

Garda forensic officers are carrying out fingertip searches of rubbish bins around the area where a murdered African woman was found hidden in a suitcase.

As officers trace the young student's family, believed to be in Malawi, detectives were sifting through wheelie bins beside where the grim discovery was made.

The dead woman, in her mid-20s, was dumped in the large travel bag in the Blackhorse Avenue area of north Dublin some time on Saturday.

It is believed the student, with a last known address at a flat in Rathmines, was strangled or suffocated.

She was fully clothed in jeans, boots and a fleece top and a plastic bag had been placed over her head.

A team of officers have been removing rubbish piece by piece from several wheelie bins and city council public bins on St David's Terrace.

A post-mortem examination found that it is likely the woman died from asphyxiation.

A passer-by spotted the suitcase at 8.30am on Sunday, thought it appeared suspicious and looked inside to find the body.

Gardai have been trawling through CCTV footage from local shops in a bid to identify who may have been in the area from Saturday night.

A witness has reported seeing the suitcase at the side of the road in St David's Terrace at 7pm on Saturday.

It is believed the woman had been in Ireland for some time - possibly two years.

Consular staff at the Malawi embassy in London are supporting gardai in tracing relatives.

The body was examined at the scene for several hours before being removed for a post-mortem examination while still in the bag.

Meanwhile, officers spent yesterday carrying out door-to-door inquiries in the St David's Terrace area and further afield around Blackhorse Avenue.

There have been no reports of a disturbance in the area.

Detectives are investigating whether the woman's body had been wheeled to the street in the suitcase or taken there from another location in a car.

The bag, described as a large travel bag on wheels and with a handle, had been left beside a line of parked cars in front of a row of terraced houses. The scene was about 100 yards from the McKee Army barracks, near the Phoenix Park.

The road was sealed off at both ends for several hours as gardai began forensic examinations of the scene and the bag.

Anyone with information has been urged to contact the Bridewell garda station or to use the Garda Confidential Line.

Irish Independent

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