South Korea extradites suspect in suitcase murder case to New Zealand

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea has extradited to New Zealand a woman suspected of murdering two children whose bodies where discovered in suitcases in Auckland this year, South Korea's justice ministry said on Tuesday.

The 42-year-old Korean-born New Zealander was handed over to New Zealand authorities on Monday evening at the Incheon International Airport, the ministry said.

She is suspected of fleeing to South Korea in 2018 after allegedly killing her then 7-year-old and 10-year-old children in Auckland.

"Along with the suspect, the justice ministry has also secured key evidence and provided it to New Zealand as per their request," the ministry said in a statement.

The woman denied the murder allegations, police said in September when they arrested her in the city of Ulsan after the global police agency Interpol issued a red notice for her.

"I did not do it," she told reporters at the time.

New Zealand police launched a homicide inquiry in Auckland after the remains of the children were found by a family going through the contents of a storage locker they had purchased. The family who found the bodies were not connected to the deaths.

(Reporting by Soo-hyang Choi; Editing by Robert Birsel)

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