South Korean police locate relative of children found dead in suitcase
South Korean authorities believe a possible relative of two toddlers whose remains were discovered in bags in New Zealand last week is in the country.
A woman suspected to be linked to two children whose bodies were discovered in bags in New Zealand has arrived in South Korea, Seoul police said Monday.
Last Monday, New Zealand police announced that they had discovered the remains of two youngsters in suitcases, aged five to ten years old when they died.
The deaths were discovered after an unknowing family purchased a trailer full of belongings, including the luggage, at an abandoned goods auction.
The bodies were likely in storage for several years, according to New Zealand police, complicating the investigation into the crime.
Possible suspect is in South Korea
A woman of Korean origin who is thought to be connected to the children is currently in South Korea, according to the police.
"We confirm that she is in South Korea and that she is a New Zealand national of Korean descent," an official at the Korean National Police Agency told AFP.
She landed in the South in 2018 and had not left the nation since then, he claimed.
"New Zealand police are leading this investigation and we intend to cooperate at their request," the official added.
Police have been reviewing hours of CCTV footage, but important moments may have been destroyed due to the time lapse between the victims' deaths and the bodies' discovery.
Forensic experts thoroughly inspected both the storage container and the property where the luggage was removed.
Authorities in New Zealand emphasized last Monday that the family who discovered the victims had no connection to the homicide.
They are receiving support to help deal with the trauma, the country's Detective Inspector Tofilau Faamanuia Vaaelua said at the time.