(WXIN) – A homicide investigation is underway in New Zealand after a family found the remains of two children in suitcases purchased from a warehouse at an online auction.
The family alerted police to the discovery last week after finding the remains inside the suitcases. New Zealand Police called the discovery “extremely shocking”.
The family who bought the suitcases have nothing to do with the remains, police said, and are cooperating with the investigation. Police have asked the media to “respect their privacy in these difficult times”.
Police said the family were “understandably upset” by the find, which was made in Auckland’s southern suburb of Manurewa.
An examination of the remains revealed the suitcases contained the remains of two school-aged children, police said Wednesday.
“Early indications suggest that these children may have been dead for several years before they were found last week,” Detective Inspector Tofilau Faamanuia Vaaelua said.
“Formal identification procedures are still ongoing, which means the police are not yet able to comment on the identities of the children,” he said.
Police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the children’s deaths and how their remains ended up in the warehouse.
“We continue to take this matter very seriously and are determined to hold accountable the person(s) responsible for the deaths of these children,” Vaaelua said.
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