Identity of body found in Tugela River not yet confirmed

Rodney and Rachel Saunders, botanists from Cape Town.

It is still unclear if decomposed body accidentally found by a fisherman in the Tugela River is that of missing British botanist Rod Saunders.

Saunders, 74, and his wife, Rachel, 63, were allegedly abducted by Islamic State-linked suspects after they went missing while visiting Bivane Dam, Vryheid.

They were regular visitors to Dundee where they stayed with friend, Eric Boswell, on McKenzie Street.

“No conclusive findings have been made yet,” said Hawks spokesperson Captain Lloyd Ramovha.

“But we can confirm that DNA samples have been taken and sent to Pretoria for analysis to establish if the body is linked to the Saunders kidnap case.”

This was as the fourth suspect in the case, Ahmad Jackson Mussa, also known as Bazooka, appeared in the Verulam Magistrate’s Court on Thursday along with his co-accused, Fatima Patel, 27; Sayfydeen Aslam Del Vecchio, 38; and Thembamandla Kwanele Xulu, 19.

  AUTHOR
Northern KZN Courier

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