Status: 20.11.2023, 05:29 a.m.
By: Patrick Mayer
What started with a date at the mall ended fatally for student Giulia Cecchettin. Her ex-boyfriend comes under suspicion. What we know – and what we don't.
Bad Dürrenberg – The Italian student Giulia Cecchettin has died. She was murdered at the age of just 22, presumably by her 22-year-old ex-boyfriend, who is considered a strong suspect. The missing person case has been causing a stir in Italy for days. The country is in shock.
Missing person case in Italy: Student found dead, suspect arrested in Germany
Gino Cecchettin, the father of the presumably killed student Giulia, published a photo of his daughter on Facebook on Sunday (19 November). Also in the picture: the mother, who also died. He wrote: "Dear, I miss you so much. Take Mom in your arms and give her a kiss from me." And: "True love does not humiliate, does not disappoint, does not trample underfoot, does not betray or hurt the heart. True love doesn't scream, doesn't strike, doesn't kill." According to the news portal stol.it, the mother died about a year ago.
Investigators found the body of the young woman on Saturday (18 November), she had been missing for a week. Her former boyfriend had also disappeared since then. German police officers arrested the suspect the same evening in Saxony-Anhalt. A video recording of his black Fiat Puntos had only drawn attention to the 22-year-old. In South Tyrol, he was caught in South Tyrol on Thursday (16 November). It was suspected that both wanted to escape abroad. Until the student's body was found at an alpine lake.
Giulia Cecchetta case: Italian ex-boyfriend Filippo T. is considered a suspect
Who is the suspect? The alleged perpetrator is said to be Giulia's ex-boyfriend, engineering student Filippo T. Like Giulia, he also comes from the municipality of Vigonovo (about 10,000 inhabitants) in the metropolitan city of Venice in the Veneto region. Giulia and Filippo were a couple for a year and a half. In the summer, however, they broke up, they stayed in touch.
According to initial findings, the two had arranged to meet on Saturday evening, November 11, at a shopping center not far from their home. Witnesses later said they had allegedly witnessed an altercation. According to the Italian daily L'Unione Sarda, investigators discovered a video of a parking lot in the industrial area of Fossò on Friday (17 November).
The municipality is located just under two kilometres from Vigonovo. According to the report, the video allegedly shows Filippo brutally beating Giulia, first in the car and then in the parking lot, before she falls to the ground bleeding. Filippo is then said to have abducted the helpless young woman in his black Fiat Punto. Investigators found traces of blood in the parking lot. Since the video was viewed, an international arrest warrant has been issued for Filippo. According to L'Unione Sarda, an extensive search operation began in canals, rivers and lakes between the regions of Veneto and Friuli.
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Fancy a voyage of discovery?
Giulia Cecchetta case: body of Italian student discovered in Friulian Alpine lake
Where did the investigators and search teams find the body? On Saturday (18 November), a body was discovered in Lake Barcis in the Friulian Dolomites. Based on the clothing, she was apparently quickly identified as the missing Giulia. The reservoir is located in the Southern Carnic Alps, about 150 kilometers by car from Giulia's childhood home.
Located in the Friulian Dolomites: the alpine lake Barcis. © IMAGO / Wirestock
According to the Italian news agency Ansa, investigators assume that the suspect Filippo threw the body down an embankment or a cliff on the side of the road. According to the autopsy, she was already dead. The body is said to have had massive injuries – including stitches in the neck and head.
Missing person case around Giulia Cecchettin: Suspect Filippo T. arrested on A9 in Saxony-Anhalt
Where did the arrest take place? Filippo and his black Fiat Punto were on the wanted list beyond Italy because of the international arrest warrant. According to Ansa information, the investigators assumed that Filippo could flee in the direction of Germany. Apparently, he ran out of fuel and money to refuel.
As reported unanimously by both German and Italian media, motorists reportedan unlit vehicle on the hard shoulder of the A18 motorway near Bad Dürrenberg in Saxony-Anhalt on Saturday evening (9 November). A patrol car checked the vehicle around 22 p.m. Filippo allowed himself to be arrested without resistance. He is currently in German police custody and is to be brought before a magistrate in the near future. It is expected that the public prosecutor's office in Venice will request the extradition of the suspect to Italy.
Case of Giulia Cecchettin: The motive for the crime remains unclear for the time being
What was the alleged motive for the crime? It is not known why the alleged quarrel between the two former lovers in the shopping center had occurred. Authorities are also still looking for a motive for an alleged murder. The Italian investigators do not rule out a relationship crime. It is also not known whether there was a quarrel because of the separation.
The case has parallels to a missing person case in the United States, where Gaby Petito, also 22, disappeared without a trace in 2021. Shortly thereafter, her boyfriend disappeared as well. In retrospect, it turned out that the partner had killed the young woman. (pm)