Bodies of two French slain in Argentina headed home

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The bodies of two French women who were found shot to death in a nature preserve in northern Argentina are to be sent home later this week, a court official said Wednesday.

The bodies "have been prepared for the trip to their home country," the official said on condition of anonymity, saying the investigating judge needed to authorize the order and submit it to the Argentine government.

Repatriation of the bodies of French university students Houria Moumni, 24, and Cassandre Bouvier, 29, was expected on Thursday or Friday, the official said.

Moumni and Bouvier were apparently killed last week while hiking in the San Lorenzo Gorge. Their bodies were found on Friday on a trail in an area overlooking the provincial capital of Salta.

One of the women was shot in the head and apparently sexually abused. The other was shot in the back.

Police said Tuesday they had arrested a new suspect who has been linked to the murder weapon, identified as Daniel Vilte.

A man who rents horses to tourists in the area, 43-year-old Francisco Tejada, was arrested and later released for lack of evidence.

© 2011 AFP

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