Family of Dutch model petition for release of body

21 Dec 2017 / 10:47 H.

KUALA LUMPUR: The family of the late Dutch model Ivana Esther Robert Smit (pix) has petitioned Netherlands' foreign ministry to help facilitate the release of her body by Malaysian authorities.
The family's lawyers through a letter sought Malaysia's permission for them to claim her body and the investigation outcome into her death here so far.
The letter, written in Dutch, was issued by the family's lawyer, Sébas Diekstra on behalf of father Marcel Smit and his wife, C. Verstappen.
"Ivana's cause of death remains unknown, and a thorough investigation appears to be lacking in the incident.
"The family has been living a nightmare," the letter continued.
It added that Ivana's body was also not released despite her body being found earlier this month.
"The entire incident has been unbearable for the family.
"Ivana's father (Marcel) collapsed from an apparent heart attack during the weekend he returned from Malaysia and is currently under medication," the letter added.
Meanwhile, when contacted, a source familiar with the investigation team probing the case said clearance was already given for the teen model's body to be claimed.
In the Dec 7 incident, Ivana was found dead on the balcony of the sixth floor of an apartment building in Jalan Dang Wangi, where she had stayed with an American man and his wife from Kazakhstan on the 20th floor.
Earlier, she was reported to have gone out to the entertainment outlet with the couple.
Ivana, who had dual Dutch and Belgian citizenship, was the second runner-up in the Malaysia Supermodel Search 2014 when she was 15 years old.
Police have recorded statements from 48 people to facilitate investigations into the incident and the incident remains classified as a sudden death so far.

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