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Belgrade - Croatian police arrested a woman after finding the body of her sister, who disappeared 19 years ago, in a freezer at their family home, local media reported Sunday.

A police spokesman confirmed the gruesome discovery and the arrest of the 45-year-old suspect in Palovec, a village 100 kilometres north of Zagreb, news website Dnevnik reported.

The house where the body was found Saturday belongs to the family of Jasmina Dominic, a 23-year old student who disappeared in Zagreb in 2000.

It was unclear who tipped off the police to the body in one of two freezers in the cellar. Local media quoted neighbours as saying the electricity had been cut off from the house and that an odour of rotting appeared after that.

Though Jasmina vanished in 2000, her disappearance was only officially reported five years later. She had lived in the house with her sister until she moved to Zagreb for studies.

Her sister continued to live there with her husband and two children, after the father passed away three years ago. The mother lives in Germany. The woman's husband was also questioned by police and was later released.

Police have yet to complete the forensic investigation and questioning and have neither formally confirmed the identity of the person, nor the cause of death.