Second man held in prostitute murder hunt

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The Independent Online

Detectives investigating the murder of five prostitutes in Ipswich arrested a second man today.









Police said a 48-year-old man was arrested at his home in Ipswich at around 5am on suspicion of murdering all five women.







Detectives are still questioning a 37-year-old man arrested at his home in Trimley St Martin, Suffolk, early yesterday. He was named by sources as supermarket worker Tom Stephens.

News of the second arrest was announced by Detective Chief Superintendent Stewart Gull at Suffolk Police headquarters shortly before 9am today.







"The 48-year-old man was arrested at his home address in Ipswich at approximately 5am this morning," said Mr Gull.

"He has been arrested on suspicion of murdering all five women.

"The man is currently in custody at a police station in Suffolk, where he will be questioned about the deaths later today. Police will not be naming the police station where the man is being held.

"The 37-year-old man, who was arrested at his home in Trimley yesterday, remains in custody."





The naked bodies of the five prostitutes were found near villages south of Ipswich during a 10-day period earlier this month.

Gemma Adams, 25, was found in a stream at Hintlesham on December 2, Tania Nicol, 19, was discovered in the same stream at Copdock on December 8, Anneli Alderton, 24, was found in woods at Nacton on December 10, and Paula Clennell, 24, and Annette Nicholls, 29, were found in woods at Levington on December 12.

Police said Miss Alderton was strangled and Miss Clennell died as a result of "compression" to the neck.

They say the cause of death of the other three women is unclear and toxicology tests are being carried out.

Detectives said none of the women was seriously sexually assaulted.





Stephens is a former police special constable in Norfolk and has also worked as a taxi driver.

Forensic teams spent most of yesterday at his home and officers remained at the address today.

He is also being held at an unnamed police station.







Forensic experts and search teams were at an address in the red light area of Ipswich today.

Witnesses said police were at a house in London Road.

The police source described the latest arrest as "significant".







Police at the address in Ipswich later loaded a dark blue Ford Mondeo onto a transporter as officers dressed in white forensic suits began the search for evidence.