An eight months pregnant woman was found dead in woodland near Joao Pinheiro, southeast Brazil. She was tied to a tree, cut open and her baby stolen.
The suspect were later found to be a 40-year-old woman, Angelina Rodrigues who reportedly arrived at the local Sao Lucas hospital with a newborn child, claiming she had just given birth.
Staff became suspicious after seeing that the ‘agitated’ 40-year-old was walking normally and was refusing to undergo medical checks.
She and her husband Roberto Gomes were arrested after the body of the victim was found on Tuesday. The victim was identified as 23-year-old Mara Cristiana da Silva.
Police said Rodrigues later confessed to getting the woman drunk before tying her to a tree with metal wire and cutting the baby from her womb.
But despite claiming in her confession that her husband Gomes didn’t participate in the crime, police doubted that she could have committed the act alone, according to a spokesman.
He said: “We believe that the husband and a third person took part, but all this will depend on a police investigation.
The victim’s aunt, Euza Ribeiro, told Brazil’s G1 website that Rodrigues became close to Ms Da Silva after discovering that she was pregnant with a girl.
She said: “The woman always dreamed of having a baby girl, and when she saw that my niece was pregnant she began to offer help.
She lent her money to have her ultra-sound scan and the day she died had told her she was going to buy all the things that the baby needed.”
Rodrigues had also allegedly moved into Mara’s home on Saturday, just three days before the body was discovered.
According to police, Ms Da Silva’s body was found tied to a tree with barbed wire around her neck, and a cut in her belly where they believe the baby was removed.
The baby is being cared for at the Sao Lucas hospital in Patos de Minas, where she is being treated for a cut to her head believed to be as a result of being cut from her mother’s womb.