Headless bodies of two women found in Penang this week

Cleaner discovers woman's torso stuffed in suitcase in Penang. -- PHOTO: SIN CHEW DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK
Cleaner discovers woman's torso stuffed in suitcase in Penang. -- PHOTO: SIN CHEW DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK
Cleaner discovers woman's torso stuffed in suitcase in Penang. -- PHOTO: SIN CHEW DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK
Cleaner discovers woman's torso stuffed in suitcase in Penang. -- PHOTO: SIN CHEW DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK
Penang Hospital forensic personnel close a luggage bag with body parts inside to bring it to the hospital for a post-mortem. -- PHOTO: THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK
Penang Hospital forensic personnel close a luggage bag with body parts inside to bring it to the hospital for a post-mortem. -- PHOTO: THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK
Cleaner discovers woman's torso stuffed in suitcase in Penang. -- PHOTO: SIN CHEW DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK
Cleaner discovers woman's torso stuffed in suitcase in Penang. -- PHOTO: SIN CHEW DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

GEORGE TOWN - The headless bodies of two women, believed to be foreigners, were found in Penang.

On Thursday, a woman was found brutally murdered and her body was without a head and legs, The Star reported on Friday.

The torso and the arms were stuffed into a luggage bag at a carpark near the Penang Botanical Gardens in Jalan Kebun Bunga.

Penang police chief Senior Deputy Comm Datuk Abdul Rahim Hanafi said the torso was wrapped in a blanket, according to the newspaper.

"This is the most gruesome case we have come across this year. We believe the crime took place at a different location and the body was dumped here. She could have been dead for between 24 and 36 hours," he said.

A cleaner, who was sweeping the car park, came across the suitcase under a tree at about 8am and informed his colleagues and supervisor.

One of his colleagues, Fauzi Desa, 49, told The Star that they used a wooden stick to poke around the suitcase, which was partially unzipped.

"There was a strong stench. After a few pokes, we saw a hand with fair skin," he said.

Penang Hospital's senior consultant forensic pathologist Datuk Dr Bhupinder Singh described the victim as a young and obese adult.

"She died of ligature strangulation as there were marks on her neck," he said after performing a post-mortem on the victim. Her head and lower body were severed after she died, he added.

On Tuesday, the headless body of a woman was found floating in the sea off Pulau Kendi by fishermen and the victim was identified as Halimahtusakdiah, 33, from north Sumatra.

SDCP Abdul Rahim said there was no connection between the two cases.

Universiti Sains Malaysia criminologist Assoc Prof Dr P. Sundramoorthy said they could not rule out any possibility, even that of a serial killer on the loose in Penang.

"Whether it's ritualistic, serial, non-serial or crime of passion, we cannot rule out anything," he said.

There have been a series of killings in Penang this year. In October, police discovered the body of a man with his throat slit, in a case reminiscent of 16 other murder victims in the state this year.

The decomposed remains of the man, believed to be a foreigner, were found at a nursery near a housing project in Simpang Ampat on mainland Penang, according to The Malay Mail.

Sixteen Myanmar nationals had been murdered in the same way in Penang this year. And as in the previous cases, the victim in the latest incident was believed to have been killed elsewhere and dumped in a remote area.