The Philippine government has confirmed that a body found in the Pagalang river in Melalap in Malaysia’s Sabah state was a Filipino woman.
In a statement from the Department of Foreign Affairs, Philippine Ambassador to Malaysia Charles C. Jose said the Filipina’s death could be a possible homicide, GMA News reported.
“Authorities have informed the Philippine Embassy that there was enough evidence to classify the case as a possible homicide,” Jose said.
The DFA identified the woman as Madelyn Bernardo Asuncion, who was 30 years old at the time of the incident. Asuncion was originally from Zamboanga City in the Philippines, but had been staying with her father in Malaysia for the past 10 years.
Asuncion’s body was found on November 28 by a plantation worker, who reported the matter to police. The worker said he found the body floating in the river with one leg entangled with a water pump structure belonging to a plantation company.
The Filipina’s body was found unclothed with stab wounds and bruises. Her hair was also shaved. She was identified by a tattoo on her thigh with her father assisting authorities in the identification.
Facebook users and friends paid tribute to her on social media and pleaded that justice be served for Asuncion’s death.
The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration promised to help Asuncion’s family to repatriate her remains.