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Unsolved Murders

Zeinep Vlaia

Age: unknown

Sex: female

Date: 26 Dec 1932

Place: London

Source: www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

Zeinep Vlaia was taken to hospital a week before Christmas and died on Boxing Day. It was said that her death had been kept as secret as possible by the police and the British Government but later reported as being suicide by poison.

She was described as a beautiful Albanian woman with fair hair and it was later heard that she had come to London from Paris.

She had been taken to St. Stephen's Hospital in Chelsea a week before Christmas in a state of collapse and died on Boxing Day. After, her body was taken to the Hammersmith mortuary where it remained for several days.

It was said that the day following her death a well-dressed man of foreign appearance, accompanied by a CID officer, went to the mortuary where they stayed for about half an hour before leaving.

It was also said that her body was kept in the mortuary for four days and that no post-mortem or inquest was held, after which she was taken away for burial at the Moslem mosque at Brookwood near Woking.

When newspaper reporters went to the undertakers, Messrs. E. B. Ashton on Fulham Road, the company that carried out the funeral arrangements, they were told that they were under strict instructions from a high official in Whitehall that no information could be given to anybody as to what they knew of Madame Vlaia. It was reported that the same secrecy was observed at the Hammersmith mortuary.

When newspaper reporters went to the Chelsea register office they found that there was no entry recording the death of Madame Vlaia even though all deaths at St, Stephen's Hospital would ordinarily be registered there.

The matter was later raised in the House of Commons where it was stated that the inquest which had been carried out in secret was made a public one for diplomatic reasons and it was heard that a verdict of suicide while of unsound mind had been recorded and that her death had been due to poisoning by permanganate of potash.

A few months later an unidentified man was found dead in the River Thames and it was thought that his death might have been related to the death of Zeinep Vlaia. A note was found on his body on which was a word that resembled 'Zeinip' and then a message which read, 'You go, so I go, Marcelle'. It was thought that his body had been in the water for about three months.


see Dundee Evening Telegraph - Tuesday 31 January 1933

see Nottingham Evening Post - Tuesday 31 January 1933