Johannesburg - The partially decomposed body of a 65-year-old woman was discovered at her home on Monday morning at Scottsville in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal police said.

Colonel Jay Naicker said a domestic worker alerted police after she became suspicious.

“When police entered the premises, they discovered that the house was ransacked,” said Naicker.

A trail of blood from the kitchen led police to the back of the house where the gruesome discovery was made.

“The deceased was discovered with open wounds to her head and we believe they were inflicted with a sharp instrument.”

The domestic worker told police that she last saw the woman on September 9, 2012.

The motive for the attack was unknown.

Naicker said police believed those responsible may have forced their way into the victim's house and a struggle ensued, resulting in the woman being murdered.

It was further believed that her furniture and appliances were stolen.

Her vehicle, believed to be a Mercedes-Benz, was also missing from the premises. - Sapa