PODGORICA, Montenegro – A man arrested in Montenegro in the killing and dismemberment of an elderly woman in New York City in 1990 is also suspected in similar slayings of women throughout Europe, police in this tiny Balkan country said Thursday.
Smail Tulja, 67, was arrested in his home in Montenegro's capital, Podgorica, on an international arrest warrant that the authorities received from FBI and Interpol agents, national police spokeswoman Tamara Popovic said.
Tulja is suspected in the murder of Mary Beal of New York City's Bronx borough, where he worked as a taxi driver.
The 61-year-old woman disappeared in September 1990 and her dismembered body was found weeks later in two plastic bags, Popovic said.
The spokeswoman could not confirm when U.S. authorities brought charges against Tulja, but he "apparently fled the United States," she said.
Police in Belgium and Albania investigating the killings of several women in those countries consider Tulja a suspect in the cases, she said.
Tulja was to be arraigned Thursday. An attorney for the man declined to comment.
Tulja, who was born in Montenegro, resettled in his native country in the late 1990s and lived alone on the outskirts of Podgorica.
"Several pieces of evidence and some documents have been seized in his home that may be connected to the alleged crimes committed in the foreign countries," Popovic added.