Pictured: Woman who ‘killed Instagram lookalike’ to fake her own death
The woman who allegedly murdered a "doppelganger" in a plot to fake her own death initially tried to lure in her victim by impersonating a pop star in need of dancers for a music video, according to reports.
German police on Monday accused a German-Iraqi woman and her friend of murdering a young woman in August last year in the hope that the body would be misidentified as her own.
Weeks before her death, the 23-year-old victim, an Algerian beauty blogger identified only as Khadidja O, received a message on Instagram purporting to be from the rapper Lune inviting her to star in an upcoming music video.
But the message aroused Khadidja’s suspicions, and she promptly sent her own message to the rapper, German daily Bild reported.
In a voice message to the artist, she reportedly said: “I hope you can see it [my message] and answer me because I’m very, very unsure... it would be really cool if you could tell me if it's real or fake.”
The rapper’s response came quickly: "It's fake, sister. Don't answer!"
But posing as the pop star was just one of several strategies the suspect is accused of using to convince her target to meet her.
One week after she had received the message, Khadidja is believed to have fallen victim to another elaborate ruse - this time involving beauty products - and was killed after going to meet the suspect, Shahraban K, and her Kosovan boyfriend.
After the rapper heard about the murder, she put out a message to her fans paying tribute to Khadidja, saying “she was contacted again with a lure attempt, this time it worked because she believed in the good in people,” Bild reported.
German police on Monday said they believed Khadidja was killed in an elaborate plot by Shahraban K, a German-Iraqi woman living in Munich, who is accused of using Instagram to search for a lookalike that she could kill to fake her own death.
German prosecutors have described a long-running effort to seek out a convincing lookalike.
As many as five women are believed to have been approached by the couple but were deemed not to be close enough physical matches.
Khadidja’s death in the Bavarian city of Ingolstadt in August immediately aroused suspicions, with police originally suspecting the victim might have been a love rival.
But after a months-long investigation, police charged the suspects - who were quickly detained on manslaughter charges - with murder.
The suspects, who face life in prison if convicted, are yet to comment publicly on the allegations.
Khadidja died after being stabbed more than 50 times and was discovered lying in the back seat of a Mercedes in a leafy residential area on the banks of the Danube.
Her face was reportedly so badly disfigured that the suspect’s parents at first wrongly identified the body as hers, before an autopsy and DNA testing revealed that it belonged to Khadidja, who had been reported missing.
Nicknamed the “doppelganger murder” by the German press, Shahraban K’s motive remains unclear. German media reports have suggested that the suspect had been trying to escape a family dispute.
While the nature of their relationship is unclear, police said they believed the two suspects planned their escape together. The names of the victim and suspects have not been published in full in line with Germany’s strict privacy laws.