Remains in Liverpool belong to missing Paula Hounslea

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Paula Hounslea
Image caption,
Paula Hounslea's remains were found on an embankment in Fazakerley

Human remains found near a disused railway line in Liverpool are those of a woman who disappeared from home three years ago, police have said.

Paula Hounslea, then 37, from West Derby, was last seen by her family when they went for a meal on 22 August 2009.

Her remains - which had burn marks - were found in a disused fire pit next to the Liverpool Loopline in Fazakerley on 5 May.

Merseyside Police said her death was being treated as unexplained.

Forensic tests have revealed her body was placed in the pit some time between last Autumn and the start of the year.

Detectives had appealed for information after a dog walker discovered the bones.

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Last week, an image was released of a gold pendant of the Virgin Mary found near the scene.

The same pendant has since been confirmed as belonging to Ms Hounslea, and she is believed to have been wearing it when she was last seen.

On the night of her disappearance, she returned to her Culme Road home after the family meal and told her 21-year-old daughter she was going to visit a friend, but was not seen again.

She texted her friend saying she needed to go away for a few days.

Det Ch Insp Phil McEwan said: "Now that we have made a positive identification our investigation into the circumstances surrounding Paula's death will continue.

"Our thoughts remain with Paula's family."

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