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Thursday, September 30, 1999 Published at 18:06 GMT 19:06 UK

UK: Wales

Unsolved case rests on DNA profiles

Police officers hunt for clues during the investigation in 1973

Detectives in south Wales are hoping to create a DNA profile of the murderer of two teenaged girls killed in 1973.

South Wales Police announced "exciting" advances in profiling techniques could help solve in the 26-year-old case of Geraldine Hughes and Pauline Floyd from Llandarcy.

Sara Edwards reports on new hopes of solving a 26-year-old case
The bodies of the 16-year-old girls were found in woodlands near the BP refinery, at Neath, in September 1973.

Detectives are confident that advances in forensic science could provide new leads for the investigation.

Detective Chief Superintendent Wynne Phillips said there was now potential to develop a DNA profile from samples taken from the scene of the deaths.

[ image: The killer of Geraldine Hughes may yet be tracked down]
The killer of Geraldine Hughes may yet be tracked down
"This new breakthrough has given us a very exciting opportunity to obtain a profile and presents us with a new challenge in identifying the offender," he said.

The bodies of the school friends were found by retired labourer Walter Watkins.

The girls had been beaten and strangled after a night out at Swansea's Top Rank Suite.

They had last been last seen hitching a lift near Swansea city centre.

Detectives questioned 30,000 people, including 10,000 motorists, in connection with the double murders.

BBC Wales's Colette Hume: "At the time, forensic science was in its infancy"
The girls were thought to have hitched a ride in a light coloured car, which has never been traced.

Retired industrial manager Derek Jones, of Cwmbwrla, Swansea, recalled passing the two girls thumbing a lift on the outskirts of the city centre.

He remembered seeing Geraldine Hughes wearing white, knee-length platform boots.

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