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Murdered Danielle McLaughlin's body 'could be released on Friday'

Danielle McLaughlin Image copyright Christy Duffy
Image caption A repatriation charity is working to return Danielle McLaughlin's remains to the Republic of Ireland

The body of an Irishwoman murdered in India could be released on Friday, a repatriation charity has said.

The body of Danielle McLaughlin, from County Donegal, was found in a field in Goa on Tuesday. The 28-year-old had been raped and strangled.

Police have said a man has confessed to the rape and murder of Ms McLaughlin.

The Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust is working to return her remains to her family home in Buncrana in the Republic of Ireland.

Colin Bell from the charity said arrangements are in place for the repatriation, and said he is waiting for Indian authorities to release the body.

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Media captionCCTV footage has emerged of Danielle McLaughlin's final movements

"I have been speaking with the [UK] Foreign Office and also with the [Irish] Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin," he said.

"They are both hopeful that her body could be released [on Friday]."

Ms McLaughlin had travelled to Goa with a friend and they were staying in a beach hut, a police officer told Associated Press.

They were attending the Hindu spring festival of Holi on Monday night in a nearby village, he added.

Image caption Floral tributes have been left close to where Ms McLaughlin's body was found

Ms McLaughlin's naked body was discovered the next day, less than 2km (1.2 miles) from Palolem, one of the most popular beaches in south Goa.

Her mother, Andrea Brannigan, said the eldest of her five daughters would be "sadly missed by all" and the family is enduring a "difficult and trying time".

A 24-year-old man, whose name has been reported as Vikat Bhagat, appeared in court on Wednesday, charged with murder.

He will also face a rape charge after a post-mortem examination of Ms McLaughlin's body confirmed that she had been sexually assaulted.

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