Close  

Remains of Filipino child in Cyprus serial killings found in lake

/ 07:02 AM June 13, 2019

Divers carry what is believed to be remains of a 6-year-old Filipino girl, Sierra Grace, near the village of Xiliatos, Cyprus, Wednesday, June 12, 2019. (AP)

NICOSIA, Cyprus  — A two-month search for the victims of a confessed serial killer in Cyprus came to a close Wednesday when divers discovered the decomposing body of his youngest victim in a lake.

The discovery of the remains of the girl, believed to be 6-year-old Sierra Grace, brings to an end the search that began when an army captain confessed to killing seven foreign women and girls on April 25.

ADVERTISEMENT

Fire Department Chief Marcos Trangolas told The Associated Press that the remains, which were wrapped in a bed sheet and tied by rope to a cement block, were found among reeds six meters (20 feet) down the lake that was part of a former copper pyrite mine.

He said divers had searched the exact spot where the 35-year-old suspect pointed to investigators earlier Wednesday while on site. Police have said they’ve found no evidence to suggest the suspect has killed anyone else, but investigators are still trying to track down anyone who had been in contact with him online.

FEATURED STORIES

The army officer, who police haven’t formally identified yet, had been in contact with several of his victims through online chat rooms. He is widely acknowledged to be Cyprus’ first serial killer.

The chance discovery of the body of Sierra Grace’s mother, Mary Rose Tiburcio, 38, down a flooded mineshaft on April 14 triggered an investigation that led to the suspect through his online communications with the Filipino woman with whom he had had a six-month relationship.

The body of Arian Palanas Lozano, 28, also from the Philippines, was found down the same shaft six days later.

The killings took place over 2-½ years starting in September 2016 with the disappearance of 36-year-old Romanian Livia Florentina Bunea, and her 8-year-old daughter Elena Natalia. Their bodies were found inside suitcases at the bottom of a toxic lake that was part of another copper pyrite mine.

Another body, believed to belong to Ahita Khadka Bista from Nepal, was found down a dry well in a military firing range.

The suspect is due to appear in court Friday, but it’s unclear whether investigators will ask for another custody extension or formally charge him.

Bunea and her daughter will be buried Thursday in a village outside the capital Nicosia.

ADVERTISEMENT

The Cyprus government has said it will cover the funeral and burial expenses of all the victims.

Read Next
LATEST STORIES
MOST READ
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Arian Palanas Lozano, Cyprus, Elena Natalia, Livia Florentina Bunea, Mary Rose Tiburcio, serial killer, Sierra Grace
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.


© Copyright 1997-2019 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.