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Dead Rottweiler found near Anarita, tests to establish any connection with woman’s death

The area where the Bulgarian woman was found (Photo: CNA)

The 27-year-old owner of dogs suspected in the mauling of a woman to death will remain in custody until Monday when he will reappear before a Paphos court, which will decide whether to refer him to trial in connection with manslaughter.

Police believe the man was the owner of two Rottweilers that attacked 46-year-old Petrana Nikolova who was found close to death in a field in Yeroskipou on February 22 and died on the way to hospital.

Police had arrested the 27-year-old man and his father, 54 who are the owners of nearby premises where a number of dogs, including at least five Rottweilers, were being kept.

The father has been released pending the results of forensic tests after remaining in custody for four days.

His son, who was remanded for six days last week, is expected to be charged with manslaughter and causing death through negligence.

The authorities said they have matched the victim’s blood to a drop found in the dogs’ kennels but they also believe that the canines involved in the incident have been killed and buried elsewhere.

On Friday, district judge Marios Ayiomamitis rejected the defence’s claim that the police had fabricated evidence, saying it was genuine and reasonable.

But he also told the police that the six-day remand they were requesting was excessive and gave them two days instead.

Police investigating the case were notified on Friday that a dead Rottweiler had been located in a rural area near Anarita.

The dog was picked up by police and transferred to Nicosia in a bid to determine the exact cause of death.

A necropsy on the animal found pellets from a hunting shotgun, the Cyprus News Agency said. Vets collected stomach contents and took measurements of the jaws, as well as genetic material, to compare with evidence collected from the woman and at the scene in Yeroskipou.

Detectives are also searching for a hunting shotgun – belonging to the 54-year-old – that was reported missing, the suspicion being that the firearm may have been used to put the dogs to death.

Nikolova arrived in Cyprus a few days before her death with her partner Ivan Ivanov and was staying in Yeroskipou. She was out searching for work when she was found seriously injured in a potato field and died on her way to the hospital before being able to tell anyone what had happened.

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