CYPRUS: Police mull draining lake to find child victim of serial killer

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After weeks of searching, Cyprus authorities may partially drain a lake in Xyliatos in efforts to locate the body of six-year-old Sierra, youngest of the seven victims of a confessed serial killer.

The police, along with the fire department, are considering their options as Israeli experts have failed in their efforts to locate the body of the child.

Fire services chief Markos Trangolas has confirmed authorities are examining whether to partially drain the lake to bring the water level down by 4-5 meters to facilitate the efforts to locate the girl whom the killer said he dumped there.

Trangolas made it clear that there is no intention of emptying the entire lake, which currently holds two million tonnes of water.

The lake is 60 meters deep and it will be difficult to empty entirely said Trangolas who made it clear that “not a drop of water will be pumped if the relevant departments do not give their approval”.

Concerns have arisen over whether the water to be drained from the lake is safe to be redeposited in a nearby river, as the lake is adjacent to a copper mine.

The Geological Survey and Water Departments have been asked to assess  the risks. Reports in local media say officials are sceptical over draining the lake even partially due to the toxicity of the water.

According to reports the 35-year-old confessed serial killer has indicated a location in the lake where he says he dumped the body of the young girl.

He claimed at the time there was a road leading to the that point, which is now under water due to the heavy rainfall of the previous months.

Meanwhile, a search for another victim Maricar Valdez in the nearby Red Lake have been put on hold to give divers involved a chance to rest.

It is expected that searches at the Red Lake are to be completed within the next two weeks.

The confessed serial killer has admitted to murdering five foreign women and two children. Police have so far recovered five bodies.

Sierra is the child of the first victim, Filipina Mary Rose, who was discovered by tourists at an abandoned mineshaft in April.