Ljupcho Palevski–Palcho, a well-known political figure with pro-Russian attitudes, was today pointed out by the Macedonian Ministry of Interior (MoI) and the Public Prosecution as the organizer of the abduction and the murderer of a 14-year-old girl. The girl, Vanja Gjorchevska was reported missing a week ago in the capital Skopje. Palevski is also the main suspect in the murder of a 74-year-old hairstylist from Veles, a city some 50 kilometers from Skopje, whose car was used in the abduction of the girl.
Vanja Gjorchevska’s father is among the suspects, but there is not enough evidence about his involvement in the murder of his daughter, the authorities said.
Palevski is currently at large, while the three other suspects are in custody. At today’s press conference, the Minister of Interior Oliver Spasovski said they have track of Palevski’s whereabouts.
Allegedly Palevski with his lawyer first went to Belgrade, the capital of neighboring Serbia and the next day went to Bulgaria. An international arrest warrant for Palevski will be issued, said Spasovski.
“I will do everything possible to bring this monster to justice as soon as he comes on the territory of North Macedonia”, said Spasovski at the joint press conference with the head of the Public Prosecutor’s Office – Skopje, Gavril Bubevski.
Three suspects, all of Macedonian nationality, are in jail custody at the moment. As said at the press conference, they gave precise information on what happened in the last two weeks, and two of them witnessed each of the two murders.
Aleksandar, the father of the 14-year-old Vanja, as the suspects that are in custody claimed, gave information about when his daughter goes to school and in which school and that on 27 November 2023 she will go to school alone, without her little sister.
According to Minister Spasovski, Vanja was kidnapped at 7:30 AM and put in the vehicle of the other victim, the 74-year-old Panche Zhezhovski, who was also found dead yesterday. He was murdered days before the kidnapping of Vanja. The “Citroen” that took Vanja was accompanied by another car, which was given by the owners to the pro-Russian political party Palevski heads, namely “Treta” (Third option).
The Citroen that was used in the kidnapping of the girl was just hours later put on fire and Vanja was murdered just two and a half hours after the kidnapping. She was shot with a handgun and buried near Brazda village, in the vicinity of Skopje. The hairstylist was also killed and buried by the murderers in the vicinity of his hometown Veles just hours after his abduction.
The motive for both murders is material gains, i.e. the murderers wanted to get ransom from the mother of the slain girl, while the hairstylist had some problems with one of the suspects, was said at the press conference.
The Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi Elementary School in the broader center of Skopje, where Vanja studied, is in mourning today, with pupils, teachers and parents bringing flowers in memory of the slain 14-year-old girl and signing the book of condolence.