Published on 12 Jun 2014 Sections ,

For Catalina, a life lost in Bucharest’s tunnels – preview


Our film from Bucharest’s tunnels exposed the hell of hundreds of drug-addicted men, women and children. Catalina, who appears in the film, died recently. Paraic O’Brien went back for her funeral.

Warning: the below video contains images some viewers may find distressing

Catalina was one of the main characters in Paraic O’Brien’s film, broadcast by Channel 4 News last month, which looked at the underground society in the tunnels under Bucharest, Romania’s capital (see below).

Abandoned at birth, Catalina told us that the tunnels were “where I destroyed myself”.

Not long after the film’s transmission on 20 May, Catalina died of Aids.

Paraic O’Brien and cameraman Jim Wickens returned to Bucharest for her wake and funeral, attended by many of her tunnel friends, including Bruce Lee, self-styled “King of the Sewers”.

For Paraic O’Brien’s full report, watch “Catalina: a life lost in the tunnels of Bucharest” in a special report for Channel 4 News on Friday, 13 June at 7pm.

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