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Sunday, 23 January, 2000, 17:45 GMT
Murder victim stuffed in holdall

Map of Sheffield


A murder inquiry has been launched in South Yorkshire after a man's badly decomposed body was found stuffed into a holdall hidden in a hedgerow.

Detectives say the man - who was white and aged between 40 and 55 - could have been dead for years, but they think the bag was only dumped last week.

The three-foot holdall was spotted by two men who were returning a drill bit to a factory in Attercliffe, on the outskirts of Sheffield, on Saturday afternoon.

The bag was covered by a bedding sheet tied with rope and the body was wrapped in polythene.

Police spokesman Jim Greensmith told BBC News Online: "The two men who found it carried it down the road, thinking it contained something valuable like an engine.

"Then they put it down, undid the rope, unzipped the bag, peeled open the polythene and got the shock of their lives."



The two men who found it carried it down the road, thinking it contained something valuable like an engine.
Police spokesman Jim Greensmith
How the man died remains a mystery, after a post-mortem examination failed to reach a conclusion.

Police said the man, who had been only 5ft 1in tall, was found in a "foetal position" wearing only underpants.

He was also described as having a slight moustache and brown hair.

Fingertip search

Officers are conducting a fingertip search around the area in which the body was found, and CCTV footage from factories in the area is being checked.

Details are also being circulated to other forces, as the man may not have been local.

Detective Superintendent Bob Varey said: "It is clear that the person had been dead for a considerable period of time, but we don't know how he died.

"The road itself is well used by people out walking and is near a number of factories. The indication is that the holdall was put there quite recently - in the last week or so is a reasonable assumption."

An incident room has been set up at Attercliffe. Anyone with any information should ring 0114 220 2020.

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