Fearing immigration inquiry, a British woman hid her mother's body in a freezer for over 20 years, it has emerged.
Eighty-three-year-old Daulat Irani's neighbours believe that she feared that authorities would discover that her elderly mother had been living here illegally, and thus she didn't make the news of her death public.
AdvertisementThus, instead of organising a funeral, the woman wrapped her mother's body in a black bin bag, and then put in a chest freezer in the garage.
"She used to look after a white-haired gentleman known as 'the doctor' when he became poorly. But I think he passed away a couple of years ago. I've lived here all my life and I never saw her mum," the Mirror quoted Alex Bennett, 24, Irani's neighbour, as saying.
Another neighbour added: "She's a very private person. I normally see her taking out her rubbish or going shopping by minicab. She's very clean and tidy and keeps her garden in good condition.
Obviously it was shocking when the police came and told me what had happened.
They said they believed the body had been in the freezer for more than 20 years. I think it was an immigration thing because her mum was illegal and they didn't want anyone to know."
According to reports, Irani had shared her secret with a horrified friend, who then alerted police.
A neighbour said: "I think she just needed to tell someone and whoever she spoke to passed it on to the police. I saw her after the police visited and she told me they questioned her for hours. I told her it wasn't surprising considering what they'd found. She said the police were going to contact her again soon."
While officers questioned Irani under caution, they claimed that they were not treating the death as suspicious.
"She said the body had been in the freezer for at least 20 years. We are awaiting the postmortem results for confirmation of this," said a source.
When tried to contact, Irani refused to comment.
A Metropolitan police spokeswoman said: "We can confirm we went to a residential address in Sidcup. Officers found the body of a woman. We believe we know the identity but await formal identification. The death is being treated as unexplained. An 83-year-old woman has been interviewed under caution but there have been no arrests."