Category: Missing Persons

The Missing Beaumont Children

The Missing Beaumont Children

 

Australia Day 2016 (January 26) marks 50 years since the disappearance of three children from a beach in Adelaide.

The mystery of the missing Beaumont Children is probably this country’s greatest and most tragic unsolved crime. The case is burned into the psyche of a generation.

On January 26, 1966, the Beaumont children Jane, 9, Arnna, 7 and Grant, 4 caught a bus to Glenelg beach from their home (only a short trip) for a bit of sun and fun. It wasn’t unusual for children that young to go off by themselves back then and eldest Jane was a responsible girl. (My mum, who was a teenager at the time, remembers that she and her siblings and cousins would often go down to the beach without adults and be there all day). The children never returned home. Vanished without a trace.

The Beaumont Children

The book The Missing Beaumont Children by Michael Madigan is a very thorough overview of the mystery and details the investigation, the suspects, the leads, the dead ends…

It’s fascinating and disturbing reading. My heart broke during the book as I kept thinking about the parents of the children, Grant (known as Jim) and Nancy, and how they survived this tragedy…this evil.

I recommend this book. It’s a well-paced read that covers the twists and turns of the case and is also told with great compassion for the children and parents Nancy and Grant who are now 88 and 90 respectively. Madigan manages a fine balance of detailing the “mystery” of the case that people around Australia have been transfixed by but also the “misery” that has affected Nancy and Jim for the rest of their lives.

The Missing Beaumont Children is available at Amazon, Booktopia and all good bookstores.

A mystery solved

 

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WHILE researching for my books and blog I came across one article from 1984 about a West German tourist named Iris Kadau who had gone missing in Australia’s Northern Territory.

Iris, who was 29, went missing while on a cycling day trip in Alice Springs on November 6, 1983.

The dental nurse was a very fit woman and set off on her bicycle to Simpsons Gap – 17km from the Alice Springs city centre. The site is one of natural beauty and spectacular landscapes and there is a bike path that is popular with visitors. Iris had cycled back from Simpsons Gap but then carried on for another bike ride north of Alice Springs. When she didn’t return to her motel that evening, police were alerted.

I got in touch with the investigating officer at the time, Graeme Charlwood (now retired from the police force), to see if I could have a chat to him about Iris’s mysterious disappearance.

Graeme very generously chatted to me and recalled the events around Iris’s disappearance:

“We had witnesses who saw her cycling out and back. We conducted extensive investigations, searched for evidence of her and found nothing. We really reached a dead end by Christmas 1983. Iris had just vanished off the face of the earth…”

In February 1984, Iris’s body was found.

Mr Charlwood said he was travelling to either Darwin or Tennant creek in a police helicopter when the pilot intercepted a call from the musterer who said he’d spotted something – the glint of chrome from what appeared to be a pushbike.

“We looked at one another and said ‘Iris’. When we got there we saw there was the bike and the mummified remains of Iris. She was chained to her bike…”

The newspaper article I had found was from The Canberra Times (February 11, 1984) and titled “Body found chained to bike”.

The fact that the chain was around her waist seemed strange but Mr Charlwood explained that the pathologist deduced that Iris had simply done what was common practice in Europe.  Cyclists would chain themselves to their bikes when they went to have a rest. (This was to deter bike thieves.)

It turns out that Iris would have been severely dehydrated – even though she was very fit, she had cycled a great distance that day and the weather was very hot. Iris died from dehydration.

“She would have felt tired and not known how dehydrated she was and stopped to have a rest. She was found near a Small sparse tree. Iris would have gone to have a rest and never woken up.”

Mr Charlwood said police had looked into the possibility Iris had met with foul play and when they were searching for her in the days and weeks after she seemed to vanish, journalists had focused on that theory.

“When you’ve got a young woman touring the highways of Alice Springs alone you can’t discount it,” Mr Charlwood told me when I asked whether police initially thought Iris had been murdered.

 

 

Hawaii Unsolved Murders

 

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Hawaii has always intrigued me.

I have been fortunate to have visited Oahu twice – when I was 9 and 15 and it was beautiful. I especially loved the night markets and the friendliness of people. I’d like to return to Hawaii for a holiday now that I am an adult.

Of course, there are the television shows that have been set in Hawaii – Magnum PI and one I loved (but didn’t last long) The Byrds of Paradise.

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But for all the beauty and seeming casualness of Hawaiian life, there is a dark side to the island life and that’s most evident in the unsolved murders that police are still actively trying to solve.

I was intrigued by a more than decade-old article by the Honlolulu Advertiser about unsolved murders from the 1970s and 1980s.

It appears that a serial killer was active in 1985-1986 as there are five cases of women murdered in Honolulu. The killer has been dubbed The Honolulu Strangler and has not been caught. The victims were aged from 17 to 36.

There is also the horror case of eight-year-old Roiti Dias (below) who was kidnapped while walking to school on May 27, 1980, and later found dead with her throat slashed. No one has ever been arrested for her murder.

Another girl, Jiezhao Li, 12, was last seen on Feb. 11, 1988, selling fundraiser tickets near a 7-Eleven store in a Honolulu suburb called Nuuanu. She is still missing.

These unsolved crimes haunt detectives.

And a recent report on the Kauai cold case unit to say that they have not forgotten victims and investigators are actively working with the island’s prosecution office to crack these cases.

– The 1981 gunshot slayings of Californians John Klein, 28 and his wife Michelle, 25 who were vacationing on Kauai. Their bodies were found on a tourist trail and had been shot seven times.

Their murders unsettled tourists and was a set back to state officials and locals, who were trying to reassure people that Hawaii was safe to visit after some other high-profile instances of attacks visitors. There had been a gang rape of a Finnish woman, 23, by a gang of local teenagers in 1979, which attracted national coverage and condemnation over the shoddy handling of rape cases by the State.

One theory for the murders of the Kleins is that the couple – he a lawyer and she a publicist – stumbled across a marijuana crop. An Associated Press article from January 3, 1982 called “Marijuana Blight: Hawaii Paradise Threatened by Hidden Cultivation” reported that six months after the couple’s death, police harvested almost a tonne of weed within a mile of where their bodies were discovered.

Information on these cases and more can be found on the website of the Kaua’i Office of the Prosecuting Attorney.

Anyone reading this blog who has information that could solve any of these homicides should contact Honolulu Crime Stoppers or the Kauai County Office of the Prosecuting Attorney at 808-241-1888 or via email: coldcase@kauai.gov

A mother’s torment – the disappearance of Suzie Lawrance

Today is International Missing Children’s Day and I wanted to share with you all the story of Liz Westwood, an Australian mother whose daughter Suzie, 16, went missing in 1987.

On February 7, Suzie went to a party at Healesville Memorial Hall. She was last seen the next day, before disappearing without a trace. Healesville is a rural town and tourist attraction in Melbourne’s outer east and in 1987, it was very much a place where everyone knew one another.

As part of a multimedia project I did in 2012 called Unsolved East, photojournalist Eugene Hyland and I travelled to Liz Westwood’s home to speak with her about Suzie’s disappearance. The video interview can be found here on YouTube.

It is a baffling case. Liz has never heard from her daughter since, nor has any of Suzie’s brothers. As Liz told us, Suzie was very close in particular to one brother and she said it made no sense that she wouldn’t have at least contacted him over the years.

An aspect of the case that i found really strange was that the party dress that Suzie wore to the 21st birthday party – a white taffeta dress – has never been found (see story below. The picture is from a television recreation of her case). Suzie would have had to change from her party clothes as she was seen the next day at a music festival in nearby Yarra Glen.

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Someone must know what happened to Suzie?

There are 1000 unidentified bodies on UK police files

 

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Artist impression of the a man whose decomposed body recovered from the shore at Poole Harbour on January 6 2000. Picture: UK MISSING PERSONS BUREAU

 

There was a BBC article this week that shocked me.

There are currently around 1000 unidentified bodies on police files. Some of these bodies date back 50 years.

This is so sad and baffling. How is it that people can go missing and NO ONE tries to find out what happened? I understand that many of these bodies will be people from Europe or other countries but still, how does this happen?

 

This woman aged between 17-25 was struck by vehicles on the A1 near Baldock, Hertfordshire at 0615. Her body was found on February 18, 1975. Last seen by witness at 0530 hours, she stated she was heading for London. Had a foreign accent. picture: UK MISSING PERSONS BUREAU
This woman aged between 17-25 was struck by vehicles on the A1 near Baldock, Hertfordshire at 0615. Her body was found on February 18, 1975. Last seen by witness at 0530 hours, she stated she was heading for London. Had a foreign accent. picture: UK MISSING PERSONS BUREAU

 

The website UK Missing Persons Bureau gives details of these bodies but despite it being “live” for seven months, there have been no new leads on any of the cases.

Lucy Brown Craig disappearance

 

Source: Sydney Morning Herald, Wednesday, 24 April 1940
Source: Sydney Morning Herald, Wednesday, 24 April 1940

 

In 1940, the disappearance of a 20-year-old Sydney doctor’s daughter captured the headlines of newspapers around Australia.

Lucy Brown Craig, a happy, reliable and popular young woman, was last seen on Friday evening, April 11 getting off a tram at King’s Cross and walking towards Darlinghurst Rd. She had left her workplace in Macquarie St in the CBD and was assumed to have been meeting someone. The last person to see her  an hour later (described in the newspaper as “…the  son of one of Svdney’s best known professional men and who knew Miss Brown Craig well..”) said she was “…with an athletic-looking man of about 22 with a small toothbrush moustache and dressed in a grev suit”.

 

Article in The Daily News, Saturday, 27 April 1940.
Article in The Daily News, Saturday, 27 April 1940.

Miss Brown Craig, who was often referred to in newspapers as a “society girl” was never seen again. Police appeals for this man “in a grey suit” to come forward were unsuccessful. Dr Brown Craig personally offered a reward of 200 pounds (he offered this reward several times over the years) for any information on the whereabouts of his daughter.

A Sydney woman, Ruby Gladys Evelyn, 27, appeared in court on April 27 after she rang Dr Brown Craig and demanded 1000 pounds for the return of his daughter. Evelyn knew nothing of Miss Brown Craig and was trying to menace money from the family.

Her family said it would be out of character for their daughter to disappear to “start a new life” and her father strongly refuted claims she had eloped. Newspapers reported that “…the whole of her wardrobe, except the light clothes she was wearing, is intact and it is believed that she had only a few shillings in her handbag…”.

There were several alleged sightings of miss Brown Craig, including from a man who said he was certain he saw her, a week after she disappeared, in a car in Northern New South Wales at a petrol station. The witness said the girl “strikingly resembled Miss Brown Craig” and was with a man, around 35, with a thick toothbrush moustache. Another man rang police with a top that he had seen her hiking with a man, aged around 40, at Orbost, Victoria. Cruelly, one called rang police to say that the young woman was dead

The family and police were convinced Miss Brown Craig had met with foul play.

A photo of her was shown at cinemas before movie screenings in the hope it would jog someone’s memory and police around Australia conducted inquiries into the disappearance.

But there was never any solid leads on what happened to Miss Brown Craig.

In 1943, a handkerchief with her name embossed on it was found it a toilet block in Toronto, NSW. For a brief time this renewed hope for the family that their daughter wa sstill alive. However, the mystery was cleared up when it was discovered that Miss Brown Craig’s clothing had been given to a woman who had worked for the doctor. This employee had given the clothes to her daughter, who told investigators that she lost the handkerchief. (It seems strange to me that someone would use a handkerchief, let alone clothes from a missing woman, but then it was a different time).

In 1945 it was reported that her disappearance was still unsolved. The last report I could find on the case was in 1953 when she was mentioned as part of an article on a missing Perth man.

In her day, Lucy Brown Craig’s disappearance was probably the highest-profile missing persons case in the country.

If anyone know any more about this case please email truecrimereads@gmail.com

Missing You by Justine Ford

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Missing You by Justine Ford is one of the latest releases from The Five Mile Press. I really enjoyed this book. I am endlessly fascinated by missing persons cases and journalist Justine Ford has selected cases that are notorious, heartbreaking and intriguing.

In particular Ford has written a chapter on a recent missing persons case: Boronia, Victoria schoolgirl “Bung” Siriboon who vanished without a trace on her way to school in 2011. (Since the book’s release, a matter of only weeks ago, police released fresh information that Bung was sighted less that a couple of hundred metres from her school. This shows she was on her way to school and police believe she was abducted by a local resident.)

Another chapter is on Perth’s mystery man who had gone under a train while he was walking along the tracks in 1998. To this day no one has come forward to help the police positively identify the man, who was aged between 25-35.

There’s also a chapter on one of the highest profile missing persons cases in Australia – Queensland boy Daniel Morcombe. Tragically, Daniel’s remains were found last year. He had been missing since December 2003.

I definitely recommend Missing You. It’s a heartbreaking read. It never ceases to amaze me that people go missing or are never identified. Someone must know them?

True Crime News Roundup

True crime news from online sources:

– Californian serial killer faces court in New York on charges of murdering two women in the 1970s. (Source: New York Daily News)

– This case is high profile in New Zealand. Ewan Macdonald on trial for the murder of his brother-in-law, farmer Scott Guy. (Source: Stuff.co.nz)

– The very real dangers of online dating. 26-year-old woman stabbed to death by man she met through online dating service. (Source: phillyburbs.com)

– Propublica looks at the for-profit detention industry in United States (with some links to excellent investigative pieces from other news sources). (Source: Propublica.org)

Music for the Missing event in Canada. Photos of 39 men and women were on display at the event.

Australian Missing Persons Register

Queensland woman Nicole Morris runs the excellent australianmissingpersonsregister.com. Nicole had a chat with True Crime Reader about the site and her work helping get information out about missing people.

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1. What inspired you to do this website?

It started out as purely a vessel for information, at the time I found the available info about missing persons online to be incomplete and disjointed with no central place for people to go to see all missing persons profiles Australia-wide. After a short time I found the families were contacting me to thank me for getting the word out there and I discovered they often just wanted to talk about how they were feeling and I could help them by just listening. To be able to give them some comfort inspires me every day and when the website or the Facebook groups (which have around 10,000 members) are responsible for missing persons being located that is a truly wonderful feeling.

2. What are some of the cases that have affected you most?

Through the website I was contacted by the family of 14-year-old Tanya Farrington, missing since 1979. Tanya’s sister-in-law Lianne never got to meet her but was determined to get her case reopened, she’s an amazing woman. Over the last few years Lianne and I have become best friends and that’s been a great joy to come out of a tragedy. The Farringtons visited me a few weeks ago and gave me a brooch that had belonged to Tanya’s Mum, who passed away not long after Tanya went missing and I feel like I am doing this for her too, never giving up the search for Tanya. It affected me deeply, I cry all the time over cases but that’s a good thing, to hold it in or become cold and detached is ultimately damaging.

Another case that affects me is Steve Goldsmith, missing since 2000. He lived in Toowoomba, close to where I live and we share a birthday. I have become really close to his parents and other family and I feel like I’ve become like a daughter to them, that gives them comfort and in turn I have these wonderful people in my life. I never got to meet these missing people that I feel I know so well but I care about them, it matters to me that they’re never forgotten and hopefully one day found.

3. What kind of feedback to you get from your website from family, friends,
police etc.

I have been doing this for more than seven years now so it’s become quite well known, and most police are very supportive, recognising the value of using the internet to locate the missing. I’m not trying to do their jobs for them and they understand that the website isn’t some sort of sensationalist true crime blog or a place to play detective. It’s about getting the information out there to the public and helping people with information to come forward to police with that info, and also to provide ongoing assistance and support to the families and friends no matter how many years it may take to find their loved ones.

It’s sometimes hard to talk about what I do with family and friends as the conversations I have during my day can often be confronting, if I’m talking about human remains or victims who have suffered terrible violence. But they do think what I do is very valuable and important for the families of the missing and they’re all very supportive.

Blood on the Altar by Tobias Jones

 

In 1993, 16-year-old Italian girl Elisa Claps disappeared in a church. Blood on the Altar is the story of Elisa’s disappearance and her family’s relentless quest for justice and to find their beloved daughter and sister.

It is also the story of Heather Barnett – a 48-year-old mother brutally murdered in Bournemouth, England. Her death is linked to the disappearance of Elisa Claps.

The man linked to both the women – an oddball (extremely dangerous as it turns out) called Danilo Restivo (known as the ‘Barber of Potenza’ for his proclivity to snipping the hair from women while they sat on buses or at cafes) was protected by his influential family and, more alarmingly, the catholic church where Elisa was last seen with Restivo.

Journalist and author Tobias Jones’s book is fascinating – he built a relationship with the Claps family – in particular Elisa’s big brother Gildo – and communicates their appalling treatment at the hands of the Italian justice system and the catholic church. Jones is also clearly exasperated by the cover-ups and disgraceful treatment the family were given as they desperately sought the truth.

This story of  Elisa and Heather alone is enough to capture any true crime reader’s interest but Blood on the Altar is much more than the telling of a crime – Jones weaves in history and travelogue about the region Basilicata where Elisa Claps was born.  Jones spent several years living in Italy and was a columnist and correspondent for the Observer newspaper. His observations on Italian society give the reader a taste of how different the flow of life is there.

As a journalist, I was particularly gripped by the part where Jones (who had since moved back to England) was reading a local paper while on a visit to Dorset in 2002 (“…like any self-respecting journalist I usually pick up local papers…”) and there, in an article about the murder of Heather Barnett, was a photo of Restivo. (”I stared at the newspaper, unable to believe that a story that had started over a thousand miles away at the far end of Italy had followed me home to south-west England…”)

This story was clearly meant to be told by Jones.

Absolutely a recommended read. It’s so much more than a true crime book.

Blood on the Altar is published by Faber & Faber.

For more information on Tobias Jones go to tobias-jones.com

Here’s a short video of Jones talking about Blood on the Altar.

 

Crime News Roundup

A selection of Crime news articles and blog posts that I have found interesting this past week:

Van Der Sloot sentenced to 28 years

– The prime suspect in the death of Alabama student Natalee Holloway, Joran Van der Sloot,  sentenced to 28 years in Peru for murder of 21-year-old student. Natalee Holloway was officially declared dead this week too.

Montana teacher found dead

A popular Montana teacher, whose disappearance sparked a search with more that 1200 volunteers, was found dead on January 13. Two men have been charged over the death of Sherry Arnold.  Police are investigating a number of theories on Arnold’s disappearance and death, including that she was the victim of a hit-and-run accident.

Missing persons list contains murder victims whose bodies have still to be found

New South Wales Police homicide squad say they are investigating many  missing persons cases. This article also includes a gallery of crimes that haunt the state of NSW.

 

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/crime/charged-death-sherry-arnold-beloved-montana-teacher-article-1.1006153#ixzz1jUqrzV1K

 

Remains of unidentified female found in Belanglo State Forest

NEW South Wales homicide squad detectives are appealing for information to identify a woman whose remains were found at Belanglo State Forest last year.

Police have released an image depicting the deceased female, believed to be a teenage girl or young woman and the image is the result of a ‘facial approximation’ that was completed based on an extensive examination of the female’s skull.

 

A group of trail bike riders alerted police to the remains in dense bushland near Daly’s Waterhole in theBelangloStateForest, south of Sydney, on Sunday 29 August 2010.

Forensic analysis revealed the remains belonged to a female, who has been nicknamed “Angel” by detectives investigating her case. They believe she was aged between 13 and 25 years at the time of her death. The bones could have been in the area between six months and 10 years.

Belanglo State Forest is notorious for being the killing grounds for serial killer “the backpacker murderer” Ivan Milat.

Strike Force Hixson was formed to investigate the discovery but, despite extensive inquiries in NSW and across the country, detectives have not been able to identify her.

“Through extensive checks with missing persons records, it appears no-one has ever reported this teenage girl or young woman missing, but someone must know who she is,” said Homicide Squad Commander, Detective Superintendent Michael Willing.

“The female’s teeth show signs of dental work typical of Western dentistry and commonly carried out inAustralia, but so far we’ve been unable to match them with dental records,” he said.

Police are again releasing an artistic impression of a T-shirt which was located by officers near the skeletal remains.  The T-shirt is short sleeved with a distinct motif featuring the word ‘Angelic’ in pink text, a rose and a heart with angel wings.  This type of T-shirt is no longer available for sale however was available for sale inNew South Walesand other parts ofAustraliafrom the early to mid 2000s.

Anyone with information that could help them identify the teenage girl or young woman to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Profile of the Disappearance of Madeleine McCann by Pat Brown

The disappearance of British child Madeleine McCann in 2007 is probably the highest profile missing child case in the world at the moment.

Criminal profiler Pat Brown has written a profile of the disappearance of the then-three -year-old while she was on a family holiday in Portugal. This 76-page e-book hit the headlines recently when the McCann family’s lawyers allegedly had the book banned from sale on Amazon.

I read this profile with great interest as to me it seemed unfathomable that you would leave your infant children alone in a holiday apartment (in a foreign country no less) and check on them every 15 minutes (these checks form a large segment analysis in Brown’s profile into the alleged abduction of Madeleine).

This is a controversial profile. While Brown points out continually that the “profile is one theory and does not prove guilt or innocence of anyone…”, the overall tone is one of disbelief in he McCann’s story, as well as those of their friends who were also on holiday in Portugal. Brown dissects the the party’s times and seeming conflicting accounts of what they saw on the night.

Ultimately, Brown puts forward a theory that Madeleine had an accident while alone in the apartment and was found dead by her father Gerry, who then took her body to an unknown location. She even proposes that the friends (or at least some of them) knew Madeleine had died in the apartment and helped the McCanns cover it up. Brown says in the profile that in her opinion it was unlikely that Madeleine was abducted but if she was, she was not alive.

It’s pretty confronting reading. I felt slightly ghoulish reading it though it was very interesting to see the structure of a criminal profile.

For me, the theory that Madeleine was abducted is entirely believable, as is the one that Brown suggests in this profile.

I purchased the Profile of the Disappearance of Madeleine McCann  by Pat Brown from iTunes for AUD $2.99.

Bung Siriboon

Boronia schoolgirl Siriyakorn “Bung” Siriboon is still missing. She disappeared on June 2 on her way to school.

This is the large Crime Stoppers appeal poster that I saw at Knox City Shopping Centre this evening:

For more information on Bung’s case see Knox Leader, the newspaper that broke the story of the Boronia teen’s disappearance.

Human bones found at Morcombe search site

There’s been a major development today in the search for the remains of missing Sunshine Coast boy Daniel Morcombe.

Queenland newspaper The Courier Mail has reported that police have confirmed the bones found at the search site are human. Two sneakers (sports shoes) were also found at the site.

It was also reported this weekend that undercover police lived alongside the man accused of Daniel’s murder – Brett Peter Cowan – in a Perth caravan park during the covert operation.

On August 15 Cowan pleaded not guilty to five charges: murder, deprivation of liberty, child stealing, indecent treatment of a child under 16, and interfering with a corpse.

Man arrested for Daniel Morcombe’s Murder

Queensland Police have charged a man with the murder of missing Sunshine Coast teenager Daniel Morcombe.

The accused, 41, has also been charged with deprivation of liberty, child stealing, indecent treatment of child under 16 and interference with a corpse.

In a press conference held this evening, Queensland Police Deputy Commissioner Ross Barnett praised the dedication of the officers who have investigated the case since the schoolboy went missing in 2003.

Deputy Commissioner Barnett said police would now search an area of bushland in the hope of locating the teenager’s body.

Daniel was abducted on December 7, 2003 while waiting for a bus in Woombye, Queensland.

Since Daniel’s abduction, his parents Bruce and Denise have worked tirelessly to find their son and raise awareness through the Daniel Morcombe Foundation. The foundation is dedicated to teaching personal safety to the young and vulnerable as well as assisting victims of crime.

 

 

Australian Missing Persons

It’s Australian Missing Persons Week (August 1-7) and the Federal Police estimate that around 35,000 people go missing in this country each year.

The campaign focus for 2011 is “when someone goes missing, more that one person is lost”.

Statistics indicate that for every person reported missing, 12 people – including family members, friends and work colleagues – are directly affected and feel the emotional and physical impacts of a missing person each year.

 

While more than 95 per cent of people reported missing in Australia are located within a short period of time, some 1,600 people still remain missing.

 

These are some of the children still missing whose families and loved ones are desperate to find.

Quanne Diec

 
 Quanne was 12 when she went missing on her way to school on 27 July 1998 at Granville, New South Wales. Police believe Quanne was murderered.

 

Rahma El-Dennaoui 

 

 

Baby Rahma  lived with her parents and seven other siblings. The 19-month-old was last seen by her parents when she was put in her bed at 2am on Thursday 10 November, 2005. About six and half hours later  at 8.30am it was discovered that she was not in her bed. Lat year police revealed that Rahma could be alive and living overseas, taken out of the country on a false passport. An inquest is expected later in 2011.

Daniel Morcombe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The highest profile missing person case in Australia is that of Queensland Boy Daniel Morcombe. Daniel was abducted on December 7, 2003 while waiting for a bus in Woombye, Queensland. Police believe Daniel was murdered.

Since Daniel’s abduction, his parents Bruce and Denise have worked tirelessly to find their son and raise awareness through the Daniel Morcombe Foundation. The foundation is dedicated to teaching personal safety to the young and vulnerable as well as assisting victims of crime.

 

Siriyakorn “Bung” Siriboon

The 13-year-old schoolgirl vanished on June 2, 2011 on her way to school – a 10-minute walk from her Boronia, Victoria home. The case is now with Victoria Police’s homicide squad.

Crime news

A selection of crime news this week.

Roomate faces hate crime charges (NY Times, April 20, 2011) – This story is incredibly tragic. the roommate of  Tyler Clementi who killed himself in September, has been indicted on hate-crime charges in using a webcam to stream Mr. Clementi’s romantic encounter with another man on the Internet in the days before the suicide. It is so sad that the internet is used as a vehicle for humiliation and to invade privacy, with these shocking consequences.

Aussie film on Snowtown murders selected for showing at Cannes (pedestrian.tv, April 19, 2011). The Snowtown murders, also known as “The Bodies in Barrels” murders, rank among Australia most gruesome. The murders of 11 people in the South Australian town happened between 1992 and 1999. The film is set for release in Australian cinemas in May.

Police find remains in search for missing girl (The Australian, April 22, 2011) The remains are believed to be those of missing 6-year-old Mt Druitt girl Keisha Abrahams. Her mother and stepfather were charged over her murder today.

Keli Lane Sentencing

In what is one of the most intriguing, infamous and sad Australian cases in recent times, Sydney woman Keli Lane was sentenced this week to 18 years jail for murdering her newborn daughter Tegan in 1996. Baby Tegan has never been found despite Lane’s consistent line that she handed over her second-born child (Lane adopted out baby one and three and her fourth child is nine years old) to its father, who has also never been located.

Lane was sentenced on April 15 to 18 years with a non-parole period of 13 years and 5 months, making her eligible for parole in 2023.

Here are some links to really thorough, interesting articles about Keli Lane including this Sydney Morning Herald one about how Lane’s sentence was determined.

Keli Lane Learns to Late that Love Hurts (The Daily Telegraph, April 16, 2011)

Rachael Jane Chin published a book in 2010 Nice Girl – The story of Keli Lane and her missing baby, Tegan

 

 

National Missing Persons Coordination Centre

The National Missing Persons Coordination Centre (NMPCC) is run by The Australian Federal Police and supports the Missing Persons Units in Australia’s state and territory police forces.

According to the NMPCC 35,000 people go missing in Australia each year. Many of those are located and return to their loved ones but there some – an estimated 1600 per year – who remain missing.

The highest profile missing person case in Australia is that of Queensland Boy Daniel Morcombe. Daniel was abducted on December 7, 2003 while waiting for a bus in Woombye, Queensland. Police believe Daniel was murdered. For details on the investigation go here.

Since Daniel’s abduction, his parents Bruce and Denise have worked tirelessly to find their son and raise awareness through the Daniel Morcombe Foundation. The foundation is dedicated to teaching personal safety to the young and vulnerable as well as assisting victims of crime.