Rita Roberts was identified through ‘Operation Identify Me’, a collaborative effort led by Belgian, Dutch and German police in partnership with Interpol.
After remaining anonymous for three decades, the murder victim known as ‘the woman with the flower tattoo’ has been identified as Rita Roberts.
Operation recognize meA collaborative effort led by Belgian, Dutch and German police in partnership with Interpol was instrumental in this success.
Rita Roberts, who was brutally murdered in 1992, had a unique black flower tattoo on her left arm. The breakthrough came when a family member recognized the tattoo through a public appeal, leading to formal identification and a poignant revelation about Rita’s life.
In a statement published by Interpol on 14 November, Rita Roberts’ family expressed their shock and sadness, describing her as a passionate, loving and independent-minded sister.
Coping with the difficult news, the family expressed gratitude for the support of Belgian Missing Persons, Antwerp Police, Interpol and Durham Police in the UK.
This cold case, known as the ‘woman with the flower tattoo’, dates back to June 3, 1992, when the woman’s body was discovered in the ‘Groot Schijn’ river near Antwerp, Belgium.
For 31 years, the victim remained anonymous, prompting Belgian authorities to hand the case over to Operation Identify Me, hoping that the distinctive tattoo would spark someone’s memory.
Rita Roberts, 31, moved to Antwerp from Cardiff in February 1992. He was identified through a family member in the United Kingdom, who recognized the tattoo in the news and alerted Interpol and Belgian authorities.
The family formally identified Rita by stripping away personal identifiers, leading to the victim’s death certificate being amended to reflect her identity.
Describing Rita as a beautiful person who loved to travel, her family shared that she loved her family, especially her nephews and nieces, and always aspired to have a family.
Rita’s identity exposes a long-standing mystery, and Belgian authorities are now asking the public for any information they may have about Rita Roberts or the circumstances surrounding her death.