A MYSTERY man who jetted out of Sydney for Rio de Janeiro has become a lead for police in piecing together what happened to slain mining executive Cecilia Haddad.

Police will fly to Western Australia on Thursday to question friends of the Brazilian national about the man who is believed to be a former lover and has been named a "person of interest," The Daily Telegraph reports. South American authorities have also been notified.

Ms Haddad's friends told police the man brought his travel forward to leave the country.

"Flight records are being checked to see when he actually left the country and when he was originally booked to leave,'' a police source told the newspaper.

Friends of Ms Haddad told police she had used dating sites after becoming divorced. One friend, Carolina Camara said she was in a "wonderful mood" on Friday night but could not be located on Saturday and Sunday, prompting her to phone the police.

Ms Camara said she could not comment on Ms Haddad's ex-boyfriend, but told Fairfax she would tell police what she knew.

Cecilia Haddad was an expert on logistics who had worked in Australia in the mining industry since 2007.
Cecilia Haddad was an expert on logistics who had worked in Australia in the mining industry since 2007.

"I know personal things about Cecilia that I am going to share fully with [police], if it's going to help some way, I hope so. She confided a lot in me," she said.

The 38-year-old's body was found in Lane Cove River near Angelo Street, Woolwich, about 10.15am on Sunday 29 April after kayakers called emergency services.

The former mining executive had worked in Western Australia before moving to New South Wales in 2016. Her ex-husband, Felipe Torres, visited from Perth to identify her body and police are appealing for public assistance to find out what happened to her.

Authorities believe her red and black Fiat 500 could prove crucial and are looking for dash-cam or CCTV footage of her and the car in the Hunters Hill, Ryde, Top Ryde, West Ryde, and Woolwich areas over the weekend.

A 48-hour window is regarded as critical in the case. Ms Haddad had been at a barbecue on Friday night and chatted with friends at 8.30am for around 30 minutes on Saturday, according to police.

She was last heard from between 8am and 9:30am on Saturday morning when she "seemed anxious about something" The Daily Telegraph reported.

Police believe the Fiat belonging to Cecilia Haddad — found in the car park at West Ryde Railway Station on Sunday — holds the key to investigations into her death.
Police believe the Fiat belonging to Cecilia Haddad — found in the car park at West Ryde Railway Station on Sunday — holds the key to investigations into her death.

Friends later raised the alarm when she failed to show up for events on Saturday and Sunday.

NSW police homicide squad's detective acting inspector Ritchie Sim said investigators are trying to piece together what happened.

"By all accounts, Cecilia enjoyed an active social life and had made a large circle of friends during her time in Sydney," detective inspector Sim said on Wednesday.

"So far, we have been able to establish Cecilia went to a barbecue on Friday night and then spoke to friends on Saturday morning, but her movements after that time are unknown.

"We've been told her vehicle was seen outside her home on Saturday afternoon, so we are very keen to speak with anyone who may have seen her or her vehicle after that time."

Investigators have been studying phone records, CCTV and witness statements while dive crews searched the river. Detective inspector Sim said there was no sign of a disturbance at her property.

On Wednesday, forensic pathologists conducted a post-mortem on her body with the findings yet to be released.

Anyone who has any information is being urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page.


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