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Thread: David Cameron promises missing child Katrice Lee inquiry, UK/Germany

  1. #1

    squareearth David Cameron promises missing child Katrice Lee inquiry, UK/Germany

    The prime minister has promised to look into the disappearance of a Gosport toddler who went missing in Germany more than 30 years ago.

    Katrice Lee vanished from a shop at a military base where her Teesside father was stationed.

    Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage asked for an inquiry into the "chronic mishandling" of the case by the Royal Military Police (RMP).

    During Prime Minister's Questions, David Cameron agreed to look into it.

    The RMP is re-examining the case but has said it is not able to release to the family files it holds on the case because of the ongoing investigation.

    Mr Cameron said: "These cases of missing people are completely tragic and the family doesn't get closure as this case, and sadly tragic other ones show.

    "I'm very happy to look at this case and get back to her."

    Katrice went missing in a NAAFI shop in Paderborn while out shopping with her mother Sharon Lee, from Gosport.

    Mrs Lee does not believe the German police's original theory about what happened.

    She said: "The German police said that she'd wandered out of a busy NAAFI that morning, past a load of shoppers, down the ramp, past the ticket seller, across this car park, through that hedge... walk to the river's edge, throw herself in - and not a soul saw her do it.

    "It's just ludicrous. It's absolutely ridiculous. What upsets me even more was the military police pursued that theory above all others."

    Abduction theory

    Katrice disappeared in 1981. It was her second birthday and her family were out shopping for party food.

    Her mum left her at the checkout with her aunt for just a moment as she went to get crisps, but when she returned Katrice had gone.

    Mrs Lee said: "Any mum out there that has actually lost a child in the supermarket, or lost sight of them for two or three minutes, will know what that panic is like.

    A special image has been produced of how Katrice may look now

    "It's this god damn awful feeling, that goes away when you see your child, but for the past 30 years it has never been able to leave me."

    Both Mrs Lee and Katrice's father Richard Lee, who lives in Hartlepool, believe their daughter is still alive, and that she was abducted.

    Mrs Lee said: "I believe my daughter was abducted, I've always believed that. There was no way my daughter got out of that NAAFI that morning unassisted."

    Katrice's family want the RMP files relating to the two-year-old's disappearance released in the hope they may reveal fresh lines of inquiry.

    But the Ministry Of Defence said that was not possible because the investigation is ongoing.

    A spokesman said that if a new line of inquiry developed, disclosure of the case files could have a prejudicial effect on the investigation and potentially prejudice the right to a fair trial.

  2. #2

    Default Re: David Cameron promises missing child Katrice Lee inquiry, UK/Germany

    Katrice Lee disappearance: Re-investigation 'a sham', says father

    The father of a toddler who went missing 35 years ago says that a re-investigation into her disappearance has become a "sham".

    Katrice Lee vanished in 1981 from a shop at a German military base where her father from Teesside was stationed.

    The re-investigation, called Operation Bute, is being carried out by Royal Military Police (RMP).

    The Ministry of Defence (MoD) rejected the criticism and said it was pursuing several lines of inquiry.

    It was launched four years ago and the girl's father, Richard Lee, of Hartlepool, believes its active status is a means of preventing the family accessing case files and details about previous attempts to find Katrice.

    She went missing on 28 November 1981 - her second birthday - in a Naafi shop in Paderborn while out shopping with her mother Sharon, from Gosport, Hampshire.

    Additionally, a civilian police review of Operation Bute was completed 14 months ago and Mr Lee said the family had not been informed of its findings.

    He said: "They haven't got my trust. [The MoD] treat my family with contempt.

    "It's about time the MoD came clean. The RMP are making a complete and utter sham of being transparent and open."

    The Lees have previously said they believe the youngster was abducted.

    Hartlepool MP Iain Wright said Operation Bute had not "had the interests of the family and the interests of justice at its heart".

    He added: "The timescale alone suggests they don't have it as a key priority, it's kicked into the long grass. It's simply not good enough and it's disrespectful to the Lee family."

    In a statement, the MoD said: "This is an extremely distressing case and our thoughts remain with the family of Katrice Lee.

    "The Royal Military Police are reinvestigating and it would be inappropriate to comment further while these efforts continue."

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