Date: 11 Oct 1991
A headless and handless body was found rolled up in some carpet in Broxmead Lane in Bolney on 11 October 1991.
It was found by a man that had been on his way home from Cuckfield, going to Burgess Hill when he had stopped to go to the toilet in a field through a gate and near some bushes. He later said, following the discovery of the body, 'I didn’t sleep for about four months afterwards and just wanted to put it all behind me'.
The man was described as being white, about 5ft 10in tall and aged between 30 and 40. He was said to have had a very large beer belly, thin arms and legs, and to have worn size seven shoes as well as having a distinctive star shaped mole on his right thigh. He was also said to have had a strongly built upper body. The torso had been dressed in a blue shirt and cream-coloured trousers.
The police said that they thought that the body had been dressed after his death in the clothes that he was found in and that the clothes had belonged to someone else.
In December 1991 the police went to Cork in Ireland to investigate a link with a German wanted for a multi-million-pound business scam. The German man, a 43-year-old financial consultant, had been probed by serious crime squad detectives from Frankfurt and Gardai. The German was said to have been living at an address in Haywards Heath at the time.
It was also suggested that the body had been the result of a gangland slaying.
The body, which had been buried in Haywards Heath Cemetery was later exhumed in 2009 for forensic testing. The results indicated that the man was likely to have come from an area of Europe encompassing southern Germany or other nearby countries. It was further noted from an examination of his toenails that he had probably spent the last year of his life in the UK or on the border between France and Germany.
Following the exhumation and forensic analysis, the police said that they were focussing their enquiries in southern Germany and had been working with police from that area. They said that they had been to Germany three times, including one visit in 2011.