Scottish Daily Mail

Agony of British father as his two girls vanish on visit to Thai mother

- By Rebecca Camber Crime Reporter

A BRITISH father was franticall­y searching for his two young daughters last night after they vanished in Thailand following a suspected abduction by their mother.

Annie and Alina Day, aged ten and six, disappeare­d after they flew out to see their Thai mother Onwarat Gamlem for a half-term holiday. The girls, who have lived in Sevenoaks, Kent, with their father Robert since their parents’ divorce in 2010, had been due to return from Pattaya on June 1.

But Miss Gamlem vanished along with her two girls and threeyear- old son from another relationsh­ip after apparently remov- ing the SIM cards from their phones to avoid any possibilit­y of tracing them.

Last night the grandparen­ts of the missing girls told of their despair, saying they only saw their mother once a year as she did not want much to do with them.

Gordon and Betty Day said Robert, 38, who works as an auctioneer and a stone mason, was hunting for his children in Thailand. Speaking from the £350,000 home they share with their son and granddaugh­ters, 70-year-old Mrs Day pleaded with Gamlem, whom they called ‘Wig’, to return the girls.

Mrs Day said: ‘Robert went out on Sunday May 25 with both girls.

‘They all do it once a year for two and a half weeks during half-term.

‘When they were married, Wig went and left ... and got a divorce and Robert got full custody.

‘We don’t know if she has taken the children out of spite.

‘It’s shocking, we can’t think or sleep and just want the girls back with us – this is their home.

‘The girls were born in Thailand but

‘Desperate to get them home’

they go to school here. Their whole life is in England and their mum didn’t even want anything to do with them. We’re desperate to get them back where they belong.’

The couple said Gamlem was meant to return the children to Pattaya airport so they could fly home with their father. But a visit to her home revealed she had fled and removed the SIM cards to avoid detection.

Mrs Day said: ‘They’re such amazing little girls and very, very bright.

‘Annie is into absolutely everything – especially cross country and swimming – and just puts her hand up to volunteer for everything. Alina is always going to after- school clubs and is very clever.’

Last night Thai police were working with Interpol to try to locate the girls a mid growing concerns for their welfare.

They have issued an arrest warrant for 33-year-old Gamlem.

Friends expressed their shock about the apparent kidnapping on Facebook yesterday.

Family friend Sharon Saunders, from Sheffield, said: ‘Rob is an amazing dad. Since his ex-wife walked out on him, leaving the girls behind, he has loved and raised them.

‘They have never been away from him si nce t he day t hat t hey were born.’ A Foreign and Commonweal­th Office spokesman said: ‘We are aware of reports of two missing British nationals in Thailand and are providing consular assistance to the family at this difficult time.’

 ??  ?? Mr Day with the girls and a friend
Mr Day with the girls and a friend

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