“Her identity has been confirmed through her dental records,” said Anders Sandholm of the police in a statement on Wednesday.
31-year-old Marina Johansson was last seen on July 28th, 2010. She was reported missing by her mother on August 2nd and two days later her ex-boyfriend was arrested despite the fact that police found nothing incriminating at her house.
It was not until friends of Johansson moved into the house five months later that large blood stains were discovered on a mattress, which had been hidden by a snug-fitting blanket.
Further examination inside the house revealed what police suspect to be a bullet hole with bone fragments on a wall next to the bed.
Her ex-boyfriend was subsequently charged with her murder, but was acquitted by both a district and appeals court as there wasn’t enough forensic evidence or testimony tying the man to the alleged murder, according to the court.
The case drew a great deal of attention because the body of the alleged victim had never been found.
However, this changed on Saturday when volunteer organization Missing People found the remains of a body hidden in a local nature reserve.
“We had a hunch that it was her from the very beginning. What is the most important is that the parents have been in the dark for so long about the whereabouts of their daughter. And now the police’s work can continue,” said Jessicka Kangasniemi, chairperson for Missing People to Aftonbladet.
The body was discovered some 10 kilometres from the woman’s home, wrapped inside a mattress which had been covered by a tarpaulin and hidden in a wooded area, with a few tree trunks piled on top of it.
The case has been classified as a suspected murder.
“We have found a body and all points to the person having been murdered. Therefore we begin a preliminary investigation into murder. We have no suspect at this point, “said Ulla Brehm, spokesperson for the Västra Götaland County police to the paper.
Officers will now continue their forensic investigation of the woman’s remains and of all the other finds they made at the site. The goal is to find traces from one, or several, perpetrators.
“It could take days or weeks, but we won’t get anywhere before that,” said Björ Blixter of the local police to TT.
He was not willing to elaborate on if there is something specific officers are searching for.
“Only the guilty person and we know what we may have found on the site,” he said to TT.