News Local Mitsero murders: Search resumes at two lakes, suspect due in court (photos)

Mitsero murders: Search resumes at two lakes, suspect due in court (photos)

A search has resumed at a lake in Xyliatou for the body of six year old Sierra, whose mother Marry Rose Tubiurcio was found dead in an abandoned mine shaft in Mitsero on April 14.

They are just two of what police believe are a total of seven victims — five women and two children — of an unprecedented murder spree that has stunned Cyprus and led to calls for the Justice Minister and the police chief to resign.

A robotic camera is being used at another lake –the highly acidic Kokkini Limni in Mitsero — as police search for three more victims — a mother and daughter from Romania and a woman from the Phillipines.

A 35 year old Greek Cypriot army officer is in custody as a suspect for seven murders. He is due in court on Saturday morning for an extension of his remand.

The 35 year old — who police say lured his victims on social media — has confessed to six murders and says Sierra died after choking on her vomit. Police are nevertheless treating him as a suspect for her murder too.

Police have so far recovered three bodies — two in an abandoned mine shaft and one in a dried up well at the Orounta firing range. The second body in the mine shaft is believed to belong to Arian Palanas Lozano  from the Philippines, but the results of DNA tests are still expected for final confirmation. The third body belongs to an unknown Asian woman.

Media reports said Turkish Cypriots have asked for information through the bicommunal committee on crime in relation to a body of a woman discovered  in a an advanced stage of decomposition near Tymbou airport in the Turkish occupied north in January.

The reports say there are suspicions the woman -reportedly from Vietnam — could be the eighth victim.



Using special diving gear, divers early on Saturday morning resumed the search of the lake after day long efforts yesterday were hampered by the thick vegetation at the bottom of the lake.

They are also searching Kokkini Limni using a robotic camera and working on a plan B should that not bring results.

The lake is highly acidic and deep and divers cannot enter with normal gear.

The suspect has confessed to stuffing the bodies of Livia Florentina Bunea and her daughter Elena Natalia as well as of Maricar Valdez Arquiola and throwing them in the lake.

On Friday evening hundreds took part in a silent vigil outside the Presidential Palace for the victims. The police has come under fire for the way they handled the cases of women reported missing. They counter that the law prohibits them from lifting the confidentiality of telecommunications adding that parliament has not given them the legal tools to do their job effectively.

An administrative investigation is underway and the police chief has said that anyone found to have shown dereliction of duty will be brought to account.

Meanwhile, British experts are due in Cyprus on Monday to help police in their investigations.


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