Paris police find body in search for missing model
Police said they may have found the body of Katoucha Niane, a missing Guinean former model.
PARIS, February 29, 2008 - Paris police said Thursday they may have found
the body of a missing Guinean former model, a one time muse of couture giant
Yves Saint Laurent, who vanished from her houseboat on the Seine this month.
A woman's body was recovered Thursday in the Seine, in Boulogne just west
of the capital, according to a police official, who said investigators were at
the scene gathering evidence.
Nicknamed the "black princess", the 47-year-old Katoucha Niane went missing
from her home on a central stretch of the river on the night of February 1.
The mother-of-three disappeared after being dropped off from a party and
her handbag was later recovered near her houseboat.
Born in Conakry, Katoucha worked with the greatest couture stars at the
height of her career in the 1980s including Saint Laurent.
Katoucha left the catwalk for good in 1994, but in recent years she made
headlines as an outspoken campaigner against female circumcision, launching a
foundation against the practice.
Excised at the age of nine, in her home country Guinea, Katoucha recounted
the ordeal in a recent book entitled "In My Flesh".
She said she saw her career as a top model as a form of "revenge" for the
horror of excision.
"I embodied the most arrogant and admired kind of feminity, I who was
supposed to be diminished," she wrote.