| 9.4°C Belfast

Man held over prostitute killings

Police were last night questioning a 40-year-old man on suspicion of murdering three prostitutes after the body parts of a woman were found in a river.

The man was arrested on suspicion of the murders of missing Bradford sex workers Suzanne Blamires, Shelley Armitage and Susan Rushworth, West Yorkshire Police said.

The remains of the woman, who has not yet been identified, were discovered by a member of the public in the River Aire, in Shipley, West Yorkshire, at about 2pm on Tuesday. Yesterday, Assistant Chief Constable Jawaid Akhtar said police had been granted extra time, until this evening, to question the 40-year-old man, who was arrested on Monday.

Speaking at the scene of the discovery of the body parts, Mr Akhtar said: “The man is being questioned on suspicion of the murder of Suzanne Blamires, aged 36, who went missing on Friday.

“He has also been arrested and will be questioned on suspicion of the murder of Shelley Armitage, aged 31, who has been missing since Monday April 26, and the murder of Susan Rushworth, aged 43, who has been missing since Monday 22 June 2009.”

Mr Akhtar added: “It is a very thorough and painstaking inquiry into three missing women, all of them sex workers, with all the necessary resources and expertise devoted to it.”

People living and working in the area said officers had been examining a number of derelict buildings in the past few weeks and had been searching the area for days. One householder said: “It's terrible what seems to have happened.

“There are girls on these street every night. Loads of them.

“They're so close together they don't even need mobiles, they just yell to each other.”

Belfast Telegraph