Fam­ily of

26-year-old to be charged with mur­der of Bri­tish back­packer as miss­ing per­son case turns to tragedy. By Han­nahMartin and Laine Moger.

Sunday News - - FRONT PAGE -

A 26-year-old man will be charged with the mur­der of Bri­tish back­packer Grace Mil­lane.

The 22-year-old, from Es­sex, was last seen in cen­tral Auck­land on De­cem­ber 1 and had been re­ported miss­ing on Wed­nes­day.

Then yes­ter­day, the case took a tragic turn­when po­lice held a press con­fer­ence at 5pm to say they were treat­ing Mil­lane’s dis­ap­pear­ance as a homi­cide and aman, who had been lo­cated at an Auck­land ad­dress, was help­ing­with en­quiries. Four hours later they is­sued a state­ment to say they­were ready to bring charges.

‘‘The 26-year-old who has been speak­ing with Po­lice in re­la­tion to the dis­ap­pear­ance of Grace Mil­lane will be charged with her mur­der,’’ po­lice said. ‘‘He will re­main in Po­lice cus­tody un­til Mon­day morn­ing when he will ap­pear in the Auck­land District Court.’’

At yes­ter­day’s press con­fer­ence, De­tec­tive In­spec­tor Scott Beard said the case had been par­tic­u­larly tough. He’d been keep­ing Mil­lane’s fa­ther David up­dated since his ar­rival on Fri­day.

‘‘Of course it’s tough, ev­ery­one who is a par­ent out there will un­der­stand and ap­pre­ci­ate what that fam­ily is go­ing through,’’ Beard said.

‘‘We’ve spo­ken to David. We’ve met him, but there is fam­ily in the UK and our hearts go out to them as well.

‘‘I know that the thoughts of all New Zealan­ders will be with Grace’s fam­ily tonight and I want to re­as­sure ev­ery­one both here and abroad, that NZ Po­lice are de­ter­mined to do ev­ery­thing we can to find Grace.’’

Beard said that although they hadn’t yet found a body, of­fi­cers had gath­ered ev­i­dence yes­ter­day that had ‘‘es­tab­lished this is a homi­cide’’ and that Mil­lane’s fam­ily – which has re­quested pri­vacy to deal with the tragedy – were ‘‘dev­as­tated’’ at the news.

‘‘We still do not know where Grace is. We are de­ter­mined to find her and re­turn her to her fam­ily,’’ Beard said.

Po­lice had iden­ti­fied and found a ve­hi­cle of in­ter­est and

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.