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Cops let suspect slip away.

POLICE probing an assault on a woman five days before her murder have admitted they missed chances to arrest the prime suspect.

Pregnant Hayley Richards, 23, dialled 999 to report that she had been attacked by her Portuguese boyfriend Hugo Quintas.

Less than a week later, Hayley, of Trowbridge, Wiltshire, was dead and Quintas was in Portugal.

Wiltshire Police Assistant Chief Constable Peter Vaughan said: 'Since Hayley's death, it has been discovered that there were potential opportunities for other officers, not directly involved in this investigation, to arrest Hugo Quintas, which were not taken.

'This is a cause of concern, which requires investigation.'

Mr Vaughan said the case would be sent to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

He added: 'There is nothing I can say, there is nothing I can do that will bring Hayley back. This is a tragic circumstance.'

Three officers from Wiltshire are being sent to Portugal as part of the hunt for Quintas.

Hayley failed to turn up for work on Saturday and police officers found her body at home

CAPTION(S):

ATTACKED: Hayley
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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jun 14, 2005
Words:178
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