UK & World News

  • 17 August 2014, 13:09

Suitcase Murder Suspect 'Assaulted By Police'

Police in Indonesia have denied assaulting an American teenager suspected of killing her mother and stuffing her body in a suitcase at a hotel in Bali.

Heather Mack has claimed she was subjected to a serious physical attack and told that she would be refused food and water if she refused to talk to officers about the grim discovery.

The 19-year-old made the claims through her US-based lawyer Michael Elkin, who has also revealed his client is pregnant.

Bali police have insisted all detainees in their custody are treated well.

The half-naked, battered body of Sheila von Wiese Mack, 62, was discovered last week in a blood-stained suitcase in the boot of a taxi at the exclusive St Regis hotel in the district of Nusa Dua.

Chicago-based Ms Mack and her boyfriend Tommy Schaefer, 21, who had been on holiday with the victim, were arrested a day later after apparently fleeing the hotel.

Police have implicated the pair in Ms Von Wiese Mack's death and are expected to charge them with murder, which carries the death penalty in Indonesia.

Mr Elkin denies his client was involved in her mother's death, adding he plans to head to Bali soon but that he was not representing Mr Schaefer.

"Said allegations and reports are not true and will be disproven as the investigation continues or at the conclusion of trial, if formal charges are indeed filed," he said in a statement.

"She has been seriously physically assaulted while in custody," the statement continued, adding she has been "pregnant for approximately two months".

"Heather was told that if she does not speak to the police she will be deprived of food and water," the statement went on.

"She was told that unless her attorney arrives within days she will be deprived of food and water and that he will be denied access to meet with her," it added.

An FBI agent has travelled to Bali to help in the investigation, police on the resort island said Saturday.

A doctor also revealed new details of the killing, including that the victim's neck had been broken.

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