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Tuesday
Sep202011

Missing California Student Michelle Le's Body Identified

MichelleLeMissing [dot] com(HAYWARD, Calif.) -- The body discovered in Niles Canyon earlier this week has been confirmed to be that of missing California nursing student Michelle Le, according to the Hayward Police Department.

Although the remains discovered have been confirmed to belong to Le, the cause of the woman's death is still undetermined by the Alameda County Coroner, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Le's remains were found in the same area where police believe the woman charged with Le's murder dumped her body.

John Hayes, a volunteer in the search for Le, discovered the remains in a remote, brushy area of Alameda County on Sunday, but investigators originally said it could take weeks to determine whether they were of the young woman.

On Monday, Giselle Esteban, who is suspected of Le's murder, made her second court appearance and was charged with murdering Le.  Esteban was appointed an attorney, who asked for time to review the case.

"All I can say at this point is that I've just met Ms. Esteban and so I really don't have anything substantive to say at this point," defense attorney Andrea Auer said.

Esteban, 27, and currently pregnant with her second child, told ABC News' San Francisco affiliate KGO-TV in June that she "hates" Le because Le was friends with the father of Esteban's 5-year-old daughter.  Esteban has denied having anything to do with Le's disappearance.

Police, however, have said that evidence, including cellphone records, indicate that Esteban was in the same wooded area as Le when she vanished.

Le, 26, went missing May 27, when she took a break from her nursing classes at a Hayward hospital.  She told colleagues she was going to her car, but she never returned from the break and her locked Honda SUV was found later half a mile away.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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