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Rudo was killed after lending man money

The chief suspect in the murder of Rudo Mawere fled to Britain from Northern Ireland after the slaying.

Detectives are working on the theory that the 26-year-old was killed by an African man to whom she lent a large amount of money. They believe the man robbed her after strangling her in a north Dublin flat on Saturday night.

It has emerged that the suspect -- who uses a number of different aliases -- is suspected of raping a woman in the UK some time ago but he has never been charged in relation to that offence.

Gardai have informed British police of the case -- they in turn are questioning the suspect's brother about where his sibling might be hiding.

Ms Mawere's body was found in a suitcase on St David's Terrace, Blackhorse Avenue, early on Sunday morning.

The bag was abandoned beside rubbish bins on Saturday evening, just hours after she had spoken with her friends.

She was found fully dressed in the travel bag with a plastic bag over her head, which detectives believe was put on after she was killed.

A house on Aughrim Street, where gardai believe that Ms Mawere was murdered, remained sealed off this morning. Witnesses have come forward to tell gardai about a heated row between a man and a woman in the Aughrim Street area on Saturday evening and a taxi driver also provided gardai with key information.

However the row between the couple is understood to have involved two white people.

The taxi man told gardai that he picked up a man with a heavy suitcase in the area on Saturday and drove him for a short time before he helped him remove the case from the boot of his car.

Our photo shows the tragic murder victim at a recent gathering with friends.

Ms Mawere's murder has triggered an outpouring of grief on Facebook, where dozens of her friends have paid tribute to the "very friendly" and "very beautiful" young woman.

Many commented on the shocking nature of her death and expressed hope that her killer would be arrested.

Ms Mawere had been living in a shared rented flat in Rathmines. She was from Masvingo province in Zimbabwe and had been living in Ireland for about two years.

She had relatives in Malawi and had described herself as Malawian. It is understood that she went to high school in Lundi, in the Masvingo province in Zimbabwe.