A 23-year-old Belgian trekker who had been missing for ten days was found murdered in a popular national park in Nepal. The decapitated remains of Debbie Maveau were discovered on June 14, but authorities remain baffled as to who could have killed her and why.
Maveau was traveling solo through Nepal when she elected to visit the popular Langtang National Park, located along the border of Tibet. The park is a popular destination for hikers and independent travelers who have frequently visited the region over the years. But it seems that it is an increasingly hostile place for female trekkers, as this isn’t the only case of violence in recent months. Back in December, two women, one Korean and one American, were both assaulted in Langtang within a week of one another, which has prompted travel warnings for those visiting the region.
What is most troubling about this latest case, however, is that there doesn’t seem to be a clear motive behind the brutal killing. Police say that Maveau wasn’t sexually assaulted, nor was she robbed. They found 8000 rupees (about $93) and a digital camera on her body, which indicates that who ever murdered her wasn’t looking for cash. Authorities also said that local residents haven’t been helpful in generating leads either, which has left them with few clues as to how to proceed with their investigation.
This is a sad story to say the least and probably one of the worst nightmares for many travelers. While something like this can obviously happen anywhere, it is always a bit disturbing when it takes place while someone is visiting a foreign country.
Our condolences go out to this young woman’s friends and family.
[Photo credit: Yosarian via WikiMedia]