Lip piercing central in identifying missing Durban woman Siam Lee
The manner in which Siam Lee vanished has now become a central focus of the police's murder investigation.
The 20-year-old’s burnt body was discovered in a sugarcane field in New Hanover in the KwaZulu-Natal midlands two days after she was first reported missing.
She was identified on Thursday by relatives‚ who had an opportunity to view her body at a police mortuary.
Sources with knowledge of the investigation‚ who spoke to TimesLIVE on condition of anonymity‚ said that her lip piercing – a unique piece of body art – was instrumental in the identification.
That‚ coupled with the colour of her toenail polish‚ helped bring closure to her family and end a search that spanned the country and occupied police and private investigators for a week.
Police spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel Thulani Zwane confirmed that the case had been changed to one of murder.
Police have released an image of a man they believe can assist them with their investigation‚ with the extent to which he may have knowledge of the disappearance of Lee not volunteered.
“The man in the attached identikit allegedly left with Siam in a black Mercedes Benz Vito/V-class with unknown GP registration numbers. Anyone with information on his whereabouts is urged to contact Durban North police‚” a statement read.
In the hours that followed her disappearance on Thursday last week‚ rumour swirled that she had been snatched by a man in a panel van‚ with video footage of the “abduction”.
TimesLIVE can reveal that video footage shows the arrival and departure of a vehicle at her place of work.
Now police‚ aided by private investigators‚ are working to decode what happened in her final days‚ between the time she was last seen and that when a farmer happened upon her body.