Body found in hunt for missing jogger

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The Independent Online

Police investigating the disappearance of of ex-Harrods worker Egeli Rasta last night found a body close to where she was last seen.

The discovery on Mitcham Common, south west London, came as officers were granted an extra day to question a man in his early 20s on suspicion of the 27-year-old Estonian's murder.

Miss Rasta, who has been living in the UK for the last two years, was last seen leaving her flat in Clay Avenue, Mitcham, on the afternoon or evening of Tuesday July 4 - the day after she finished a temporary job at Harrods.

A regular jogger on Mitcham Common, she was wearing running clothes and heading toward the common when she was spotted.

Four days later, after a series of missed appointments and unanswered calls, friends decided to climb into her flat with a ladder and, finding no sign of her, raised the alarm.

Although details were only released yesterday, the man was arrested at his home in Mitcham on July 13.

Officers have searched both his home in Mitcham and a related address in Edmonton, north London, and forensic tests have been being carried out on muddied clothes thought to belong to him.

Although detectives would not reveal the specific potential evidence which led to the man's arrest, police confirmed that there is no evidence that he knew Miss Rasta.

Detective Chief Inspector David Garwood of Scotland Yard's specialist Crime Directorate said that Miss Rasta had been working on the cosmetics floor at Harrods but finished her temporary contract the day before her disappearance.

Investigations have shown that she called her temping agency on the Tuesday morning hours before her disappearance, to make inquiries about her next job and made an appointment for that Thursday but never attended.

Another call she made before her disappearance was to a close friend in Estonia, arranging to meet her at Gatwick airport on the Wednesday but she did not turn up.

Mr Garwood also disclosed that the missing woman had been seeing a man who was in another relationship, unknown to his partner.

The unnamed man had also become concerned by the Friday, as she had not returned his messages.

The man, who is not thought to be a suspect, has since revealed the fact that he had been seeing the missing woman to his partner.

Finally, on the Saturday a group of her friends decided to climb up a ladder and search her flat and found that all of her belongings such as her passport, make-up and bank book were still there.

Only her keys, phone and a pair of trainers appeared to be missing.