Fears for fourth prostitute

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The Independent Online

Detectives investigating the deaths of three prostitutes said today that they were worried about another missing woman.

Paula Clennell, 24, has not been seen since late on Saturday, police said.

Senior detectives said Miss Clennell worked as a prostitute in Ipswich, Suffolk, and had been reported missing.

Three prostitutes - all thought to work in Ipswich - have been found dead near the town in the past eight days.

Gemma Adams, 25, of Ipswich, vanished in the early hours of November 15. Her naked body was found in a stream at nearby Hintlesham on December 2.

Tania Nicol, 19, also of Ipswich, disappeared on October 30. Her naked body was found in a pond at nearby Copdock on December 8.

The third prostitute - a woman in her 20s, not yet named by police - was found dead in a wood at nearby Nacton yesterday. Her body was also naked.

"We know that Paula uses a number of addresses in Ipswich and we are currently checking these to establish her whereabouts," said Detective Chief Superintendent Stewart Gull, who is heading the inquiry.

"We would urge Paula or anyone who knows of her whereabouts to call us immediately so that we can be reassured that she is safe and well."

He said a friend of Miss Clennell's had reported her missing, saying that she had not been seen since late on Saturday.

Mr Gull said the discovery of the third body yesterday was a "deeply disturbing development".

He said the dead woman was known to be a prostitute and thought to be 24 years old.

Her body had been spotted by a passing motorist shortly after 3pm yesterday.

He said post-mortem tests would be carried out later.

"This is a deeply disturbing development, particularly in the light of the two murder investigations which have been launched during the past fortnight," said Mr Gull.

"While we can't formally link the discovery of the body at Nacton with the two murders, the facts speak for themselves."

Mr Gull added: "The key to our inquiries is information from local people.

"At this stage we don't know how long the body may have been at the location.

"Our appeal is to anyone who has used the road in the past week and saw anything suspicious, anything unusual or out of place, to get in touch with us immediately."