Irish woman found dead in Goa, one arrested

An Irish woman was found dead in Goa Photograph:( Others )

WION New Delhi Mar 15, 2017, 02.08 PM (IST)

Indian Police on Wednesday said they had launched a murder investigation into the death of an Irish woman who was found dead and naked at an isolated open place in south Goa.

The body of 28-year-old Danielle McLaughlin was discovered in a field on Tuesday and an autopsy is being conducted to ascertain whether she was sexually assaulted, deputy superintendent Sammy Tavares of the Goan police told AFP. 

He also said that a suspect had been arrested. A media report had earlier claimed that a man had confessed to her rape and murder.

"Her body was found in a naked state. A case has been filed under section 302 of the Indian Penal Code (murder)," Tavares said.

The girl had come with a friend and had participated in Holi celebrations, before being found dead on Tuesday. She had a dual Irish and British citizenship.

Several foreigners have died in Goa over the past decade or so, including 15-year-old British schoolgirl Scarlett Keeling, whose bruised and semi-naked body was found in shallow water on the popular Anjuna beach in 2008.

An Indian court had cleared two men of raping and killing Scarlett Keeling last year.

In a brief statement, McLaughlin's mother Andrea Brannigan said the family were "finding it very difficult at this trying time.

"Anyone who knew her knew that she was a beautiful and kind hearted, funny young lady who loved life and was a loyal and devoted friend, sister and daughter," Duffy said.

"They say the brightest stars burn the quickest and no other analogy could describe Danielle's life better."

"Danielle will be sadly missed by us all."?

A fund created by McLaughlin's friend Christy Duffy to fund the repatriation of her body quickly raised more than 15,000 euros ($16,000).

Ireland said since the Glasgow-born McLaughlin was travelling to India using a British passport, the local British consulate had the main responsibility of dealing with the Indian authorities.

The Irish foreign ministry stated that its embassy in India was "following up on the suspected murder of an Irish woman in Goa."

"It has been confirmed that the woman travelled to India using a British passport, so the local British consulate has the lead responsibility in terms of dealings with the Indian authorities.

"The Irish embassy is liaising closely with the British authorities and an Irish consular official is travelling from New Delhi to Goa today," the statement added.

Britain's consulate in Mumbai told AFP it was working closely with local authorities.

(WION with inputs from AFP)