Body of slain Peace Corps volunteer cremated in the Philippines
Apr 26, 2007, 4:19 GMT
Manila - The body of a US Peace Corps volunteer bludgeoned to death in the northern Philippines was cremated on Thursday as police continued to investigate her death.
Security was tight at the private funeral home in Manila, where US Embassy and police officials witnessed the cremation of Julia Campbell's body.
The US Embassy will send the ashes to Campbell's family, officials said.
Campbell, 40, disappeared on April 8 while on a hike to the famed rice terraces in Banaue town in Ifugao province, 290 kilometres north of Manila.
Her decomposing body was found buried in a shallow grave 10 days later.
An autopsy showed that she died from severe blows to the head.
Police have identified a suspect in Campbell's killing, but the 25-year-old local woodcarver has since gone into hiding.
Investigators said robbery could have been the motive for the killing. They added that Campbell could have fought back when attacked.
The killing has hurt tourism in the area, where the number of visitors has gone down drastically since Campbell's body was found on April 18, according to local officials.
Campbell was one of 137 Peace Corps volunteers in the Philippines. She arrived in March 2005, and taught at a college in the eastern city of Legazpi.
The US embassy said more than 8,000 Peace Corps volunteers have served in the Philippines since 1961, making it the second oldest Peace Corps programme in the world.© 2007 dpa - Deutsche Presse-Agentur