Searching for Siam: Two weeks since her disappearance‚ this is what we know so far
Exactly two weeks after Siam Lee was reported missing from outside a Durban North home on January 4‚ police have made an arrest for the murder of the 20-year-old.
This comes as police are waiting for the outcome of DNA testing to 100% confirm that a burnt body found at a farm in New Hanover‚ in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands‚ is Lee. Investigators are also awaiting the final outcome of a post-mortem to determine cause of death.
While details on Wednesday night's arrest are still scant‚ this is what we know about Lee's vexing disappearance and murder:
January 4 - The 20-year-old escort was last seen barefoot and wearing a summer dress. While reports circulated that there was footage of her abduction‚ police sources confirm that no footage ever existed.
Siam Lee went missing on January 4 this year. Her body was found two days later in a secluded cane field. Police are searching for suspects.
January 6 - A New Hanover farmer‚ on an afternoon fishing trip with his grandson‚ happened upon the charred remains of a woman in his sugarcane field. Police are called to the scene to the area‚ which flanks a dam.
January 7 - Lee’s mother‚ Carmen‚ and family friend Sue Foster record a video appeal for her safe return. Their tearful plea is circulated by MobiClaw‚ a private investigations firm assisting with the case.
January 10 - Police issue the identikit of a man they believe to be valuable to their investigation. They reveal that he would likely have been driving a black van with a Gauteng registration.
January 11 - Siam Lee’s body is officially identified by members of her family who were called to the mortuary at the New Hanover police station. While her body was badly burned‚ crucial identifiers like her toenail polish and her lip piercing enable this. Comparative DNA samples to unequivocally identify her remains are sent for testing at the central police laboratory in Pretoria.
January 17 - Police make an arrest in the case‚ taking a man into custody in Hillcrest‚ west of Durban. Police sources confirmed that during the arrest they recovered a black van and a gun. Both were seized and sent for testing. Particular focus has been placed on the vehicle‚ which was forensically examined.