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Woman arrested in South Korea after bodies of children found in New Zealand storage unit

A woman has been arrested in South Korea over the deaths of two children whose bodies were found in suitcases bought by a family in a storage-wars style auction.

Police had previously said the bodies of the two children were thought to have been in the suitcases for up to four years.

The contents of the unit were bought at a storage auction by an unwitting family, who took them home – where they then discovered the bodies.

Detective Inspector Tofilau Faamanuia Vaaelua previously said they had nothing to do with the deaths and had been understandably distressed by their discovery.


They were identified as 7- and 10-year-old New Zealanders of Korean descent.

A 42-year-old woman was arrested at 1am local time in Ulsan, a city on Korea’s southeast coast, according to YTV, a Korean 24-hours news channel.

She was reportedly found “hiding in an apartment”.

More from World

New Zealand police investigators work at a scene in Auckland on Aug. 11, 2022, after bodies were discovered in suitcases. A family who bought some abandoned goods from a storage unit in an online auction found the bodies of two young children concealed in two suitcases, police said Thursday, Aug. 18, 2022.
Pic: New Zealand Herald via AP

On 22 August the Korean National Police Agency confirmed a female relative of the children had arrived in South Korea in 2018 and had no record of leaving the country since that year.

Authorities said the father of the children died of cancer in 2017, according to the New Zealand Herald.

An extradition review will now be carried out, which could see the woman return to New Zealand to face charges.


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