Gardaí renew child rescue alert for missing girl (14)

ireland
Gardaí Renew Child Rescue Alert For Missing Girl (14)
An Garda Síochána is seeking the public's assistance in tracing the whereabouts of Svetlana Murphy.
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By Benjamin Cooper, PA

A child rescue alert remains in place for a 14-year-old girl who went missing on Monday from Co Louth.

An Garda Síochána initiated the Child Rescue Ireland (CRI) alert and is seeking the public's assistance in tracing the whereabouts of Svetlana Murphy, who left her home in the company of an 18-year-old man, Nojus Maculevicius.

The CRI system is used when gardaí launch a missing person’s inquiry for children who are missing and believed to be in serious and imminent danger.

The alert applies to Svetlana, as she is a child, but gardaí are also trying to find Mr Maculevicius and have appealed to both of them to come forward, or at least make contact with their families or gardaí.

“Following investigations to date, An Garda Síochána now have serious concerns that there is an immediate and serious risk to the health or welfare of Svetlana,” the Garda said in a CRI alert, 10 of which had been issued up to 8.30pm on Thursday.

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Garda Headquarters in Dublin’s Phoenix Park re-issued the alert every two hours, as is standard under the CRI system, with Supt Liam Geraghty also speaking in the media to urge Svetlana and Mr Maculevicius to make contact.

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The teenager left her home on Coast Road, Blackrock, Co Louth, at about 4pm on Monday in the company of Mr Maculevicius.

The pair, who are travelling in a silver Hyundai Veloster car with registration number 132-D-13518, were seen in Newry, Co Down, about 7pm that evening.

Shortly before lunchtime on Thursday, gardaí released new images of the car the pair are understood to be travelling in.

Gardaí believe the vehicle was in the greater Belfast area at 5.35pm on Wednesday.

Svetlana is described as 5 foot 1 inch in height with a slim build, and has brown hair and brown eyes.

At the time she went missing, she was wearing navy tracksuit bottoms with a red and white stripe on the leg, a black zipped top and black runners.

Mr Maculevicius is described as being 6 foot in height with a slim build, and has dark brown hair and is clean shaven.

He was wearing dark grey Snickers work trousers and a black Snickers top. He may also have been wearing a khaki green hoody, and either black boots or Adidas runners.

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The Irish Times has reported that while Svetlana Murphy and Nojus Maculevicius have been traced to Northern Ireland, after confirmed sightings of the car, gardaí were concerned they may be planning to go to Britain.

Local Senator John McGahon told Newstalk radio that everyone is praying for the 14-year-old's safe return.

“The entire community of Blackrock, Dundalk and Co Louth are absolutely behind the Murphy family and we’re all willing, wishing and praying that she comes home as safe as possible and as soon as possible.”

Gardaí have urged those who see the pair not to approach them and instead immediately dial 999 or 112 or the nearest Garda station providing as much information as possible.

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