Growing evidence of the links between Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock and the Philippines are coming to light.
It has emerged that shortly before his deadly attack, Paddock transferred $100,000 to his Filipina-Australian girlfriend Marilou Danley, who travelled to the country last month.
It has also been reported that the mass murderer has visited the Philippines on at least two occasions in 2013 and 2014.
The Philippines’ National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) said the FBI in America had sought its help in tracking down Ms Danley.
“Danley arrived in the Philippines last month, and then there was a wire transfer to her account for $100,000 from Stephen,” NBI spokesman Nick Suarez said.
“The FBI has coordinated with the Philippine office of the Interpol to look for her.”
Danley first arrived in the Philippines on September 15. She departed on September 22 then returned three days later on a flight from Hong Kong. She was travelling on an Australian passport.
Danley is now in the USA after flying out from Manila yesterday (Tuesday, October 3). She was pictured arriving at Los Angeles airport in a wheelchair and accompanied by FBI agents.
She has been named as “a person of interest” by investigators.
Her sisters in Australia said in a Seven News interview that she couldn’t have known about Paddock’s plans, and that he must have sent her away so she wouldn’t “interfere”.
Amelia Manango and Liza Werner described Danley as “a good person” who would have stopped Paddock had she been there.
“She was sent away. She was sent away so that she will not be there to interfere with what he’s planning.
“He sent her away so that he can plan what he is planning without interruptions,” one of the sisters said. “In that sense, I thank him for sparing my sister’s life. But that won’t be able to compensate the 59 people’s lives.”
They say they hope Danley can assist police with their investigations as she is the only one who can “put the puzzles together”.
Danley family speaks
Paddock, a 64-year-old gambler and retired accountant, killed 59 people and injured hundreds others when he used a huge arsenal of weapons to shoot at a Las Vegas concert from a hotel room on Sunday.
Immediately after Paddock’s identity emerged, Danley’s brother Reynaldo Bustos, who lives in Manila, called his sister.
“She said: ‘Relax, we shouldn’t worry about it. I’ll fix it. Do not panic. I have a clean conscience’,” he told ABC News.
Danley is an Australian citizen who moved to the USA 20 years ago to work on the casino strip, the Australian government confirmed yesterday.
“There are reports her ID was used for booking the hotel or some such detail,” Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said.
“Australia will support the US authorities in their investigation in whatever way we can. However, we have not had contact with Marilou Danley directly.”
Media reports have said that 62-year-old Danley was born in the Philippines, although this has not been confirmed.
Paddock killed himself in his hotel room after mowing down the concert-goers.
His motives for the mass killing are still unknown. However, investigators hope Danley might be able to shed some light on his state of mind.