An Australian teacher has been raped and murdered while hiking in Eastern Europe, with her terrifying final moments heard by a friend in an international phone call.

Shanae Brooke Edwards, 31, was hiking the popular Mount Mtatsminda alone above Tbiilsi, Georgia, when she was jumped and assaulted on Friday July 30 before her body was found the next day.

Ms Edwards was on a call to a friend in the United States while trekking on Friday afternoon when she was heard to shout ‘take your hands off me’ – before the call cut out.

Shanae Brooke Edwards, 31, was hiking by herself on Mount Mtatsminda in Tbiilsi, Georgia when she was jumped and assaulted on Friday July 30 before her dead body was found the next day

Shanae Brooke Edwards, 31, was hiking by herself on Mount Mtatsminda in Tbiilsi, Georgia when she was jumped and assaulted on Friday July 30 before her dead body was found the next day

Shanae Brooke Edwards, 31, was hiking by herself on Mount Mtatsminda in Tbiilsi, Georgia when she was jumped and assaulted on Friday July 30 before her dead body was found the next day

Ms Edwards had volunteered in Melbourne. Her body was retrieved by a team of volunteer searchers, including her friends, on Saturday July 31

Ms Edwards had volunteered in Melbourne. Her body was retrieved by a team of volunteer searchers, including her friends, on Saturday July 31

Ms Edwards had volunteered in Melbourne. Her body was retrieved by a team of volunteer searchers, including her friends, on Saturday July 31

Ms Edwards had called the friend moments earlier, who heard her pleading ‘Please let me go, ok … just let me go’, the Herald Sun reported.

She was seen on CCTV footage leaving her apartment at 3.35pm on Friday with her hair tied up, wearing a black hiking outfit and carrying a green bag.

Nina Lulla wrote in a Facebook group for expats in Georgia on Saturday that ‘there was last a disturbing call from her while she was being attacked and screaming for help’.

Ms Edwards went missing after being attacked on Mount Mtatsminda near Tbilisi, the capital of the former Soviet republic of Georgia, where she had been teaching English. Her body was discovered after an overnight search

Ms Edwards went missing after being attacked on Mount Mtatsminda near Tbilisi, the capital of the former Soviet republic of Georgia, where she had been teaching English. Her body was discovered after an overnight search

Ms Edwards went missing after being attacked on Mount Mtatsminda near Tbilisi, the capital of the former Soviet republic of Georgia, where she had been teaching English. Her body was discovered after an overnight search

Ms Edwards has been remembered as a kind and caring person with a love of adventure and animals. Her death is being treated as a premeditated murder by the Georgian authorities

Ms Edwards has been remembered as a kind and caring person with a love of adventure and animals. Her death is being treated as a premeditated murder by the Georgian authorities

Ms Edwards has been remembered as a kind and caring person with a love of adventure and animals. Her death is being treated as a premeditated murder by the Georgian authorities

Members of the group helped to organise a group to search for Ms Edwards following the call.

Her phone was tracked to the Mtatsminda Park – a booming tourist park with several tourist rides on top of Mount Mtatsminda – but early searches proved fruitless.

Ms Edwards’ body was retrieved by a team of volunteer searchers, including her friends, on Saturday July 31. 

She had been teaching English in the former Soviet republic for two years. 

The Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia launched an investigation into her death, which is being treated as premeditated murder.

Georgian Interior Minister Vakhtang Gomelauri told media the suspect was a Georgian national.

‘The ministry and police officers are doing their best to find the murderer… We [the Ministry of Internal Affairs] have some information, though I can not talk about it due to the interests of the investigation’, said Mr Gomelauri. 

Ms Edwards posted a photo of herself on a mountain with the caption ‘Joy’ on Instagram on Thursday.

Ms Edwards, from Melbourne, had been teaching English for two years in the former Soviet republic of Georgia and was known to have climbed Mount Mtatsminda above Tbilisi before she was murdered

Ms Edwards, from Melbourne, had been teaching English for two years in the former Soviet republic of Georgia and was known to have climbed Mount Mtatsminda above Tbilisi before she was murdered

Ms Edwards, from Melbourne, had been teaching English for two years in the former Soviet republic of Georgia and was known to have climbed Mount Mtatsminda above Tbilisi before she was murdered

Tributes for the kind and adventurous Shanae Brooke Edwards have flooded social media since her brutal murder

Tributes for the kind and adventurous Shanae Brooke Edwards have flooded social media since her brutal murder

Tributes for the kind and adventurous Shanae Brooke Edwards have flooded social media since her brutal murder

She volunteered with various causes in Melbourne including with homeless people and was a passionate animal lover, having rescued stray cats in Australia and Europe.

Tributes for the ‘kind’ and ‘adventurous’ Ms Edwards flooded social media this week.

A friend, Elina Osmanova, posted a video of Ms Edwards after she adopted a cat and her kittens, saying she had cut short a holiday to care for them.

‘She was that kind of person. Loving and caring . I miss her so much.’

‘Shanae was always up for an adventure, so kind-hearted to those around her, full of laughter and a shining light. I lack the words to fully express what I feel, however I only have love for her,’ Sarah Richards wrote.

Another friend, Natalie Curro, described her as ‘selfless, caring and tough as nails’.

Mr Gomelauri confirmed there has been reports of women being followed by men in Mtatsminda Park, but denied they had been assaulted.

The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade was providing consular assistance to Ms Edwards’ family.

‘The Australian government offers its deepest condolences to the family of an Australian woman whose death is being investigated by authorities in Tbilisi, Georgia,’ a DFAT statement read.

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