A WOMAN found dead near the main Motril-Granada road may have been murdered by a gang dedicated to the white slave trade, police claim.
The semi-naked body of the woman was discovered by a local farmer in a water irrigation channel on the evening of October 12 – 50 metres from the N323 within the Vélez de Benaudalla municipal boundaries.
An autopsy has revealed the woman – who has yet to be identified – died after falling, or being thrown, from a 20- metre high bridge into the water channel.
The results also showed the woman had been the victim of a serious sexual assault immediately before her death.
The body was found with extensive injuries to the head and face making identification difficult but it is believed the woman is of east European origin and aged between 20 and 25.
Police are unsure if the woman received the injuries before her death or if the impact of the fall was the cause.
One hypothesis being investigated is that the woman was a prostitute who worked for a gang dedicated to the white slave trade.
Police said her death could either have been the result of her trying to escape prostitution or she was killed by a rival gang.
A possible link with the Vélez case and the discovery of the body of an east European female in the Almería province at the beginning of September is also being investigated.
Police believe the girls could have worked for the same gang or even been related.
A computer-generated image of what the Vélez woman may have looked like has been sent to forensic experts in Madrid.