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'There was not a huge search': Neighbour claims Greek police search for missing Ben Needham was not thorough

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'There was not a huge search': Neighbour claims Greek police search for missing Ben Needham was not thorough

Post  Pedro Silva on Wed Aug 22, 2012 10:35 am

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Re: 'There was not a huge search': Neighbour claims Greek police search for missing Ben Needham was not thorough

Post  bb1 on Wed Aug 22, 2012 11:05 am

'There was not a huge search': Neighbour claims Greek police search for missing Ben Needham was not thorough

Stefanos Troumochis claims there was not a thorough search of the area when the toddler went missing

A man whose family owned a house yards from where missing toddler Ben Needham was last seen claims police did not carry out a proper search.

Stefanos Troumochis was nine when Ben disappeared on the Greek island of Kos in 1991.

But he vividly remembers the concern locals felt for the missing toddler and claims there was not a thorough search of the area.

Stefanos revealed his family were having a villa built on the island and earth dug up from the building site was dumped 50 yards away, next to a house Ben’s grandfather was renovating.

As the Mirror revealed yesterday, Greek police now want to excavate a mound of rubble at the same spot, believing Ben could be buried there, and South Yorkshire police have promised to help.

Stefanos said: “What I remember thinking at the time, when I was a schoolboy, was that there was hardly anyone searching that hillside for the little British boy.

“My family did everything they could back then from what I remember, but there was not a huge manhunt like you would expect.

“Life just went on as normal. Kos is such a safe place that to me it always seemed that an accident was the most obvious answer.

"What else could happen up there?”

His mum Kerry, 40, firmly believes Ben is alive but says she backs the Greek police in whatever line of enquiry they wish to pursue.

And she added: “The Home Office need to make some funds available. This should be sooner, rather than later so we can carry on with the real search for Ben.

“If the search is what the Greek police want to do we should get it underway.

“I believe South Yorkshire police will assist them but they need specialist equipment and that will have to be approved by the Home Office.

“At least then we can put all the sceptics to rest. This is an awful thought for me and my family to have to deal with.

"But it is now showing, after 20-plus years, the Greek police are actually interested in doing something with the case.

“I believe that has been prompted by South Yorkshire Police involvement and their genuine support for me and my family.”

Following our revelations the man in charge of foreign tourism in Kos also backed Greek police demands for help excavating the mound of earth.

Nikos Sofos, one of the most senior officials on the island, said it is now “time to put right” the failures in the original investigation after Ben vanished in July 1991.

Speaking at his council office in Kos Town, Mr Sofos said: “There were some terrible errors made at the time and clearly nothing was done properly.

“To the people here it remains so improbable that Ben was abducted and somehow spirited off the island.

“There were no crimes like this before Ben, and nothing like it has ever happened since.

“The police should have done a much more thorough examination of the rubble and earth being dumped around the house at the time, but they didn’t.

“It’s a shame it has taken 21 years, but it seems that finally they are doing what needs to be done.”

Last night a South Yorks Police spokesman said: “The investigation into the disappearance of Ben Needham remains with the Greek authorities.

“Should they request any help or support from South Yorkshire Police we will look to support them where we can and within our resources.”

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Few will weep tears for Amaral, seeing an angry man locked up in his own bitter and baseless theories
. -Neil Tweedie, Daily Mail, of the McCanns' tormentor Gonzo.
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Re: 'There was not a huge search': Neighbour claims Greek police search for missing Ben Needham was not thorough

Post  Pedro Silva on Wed Aug 22, 2012 11:42 am

Who do we have to thank for this? To the McCanns who brought to the worldwide knowledge, through their search for their daughter, other cases of missing children worldwide.
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British cops quiz gypsy family 24 years after toddler's disappearance

Post  Max on Fri Jul 24, 2015 12:40 pm


Ben Needham: British cops quiz gypsy family 24 years after toddler's disappearance

22:00, 23 JULY 2015

BY LUCY THORNTON

His mum Kerry said she was 'relieved they have finally been challenged' after he vanished from Greek island of Kos aged 21 months.

British police have questioned a gypsy family in Greece about the disappearance of Ben Needham.

His mum Kerry said she was “relieved they have finally been challenged”.

Police have also interviewed a long-serving prisoner who is one of the people to have claimed the notorious Roma gypsy family were involved in the possible abduction of British lad Ben.

He vanished from the Greek island of Kos 24 years ago tomorrow aged 21 months.

Ben’s relatives think he was stolen. He vanished in 1991 while outside a farmhouse the family had been helping to renovate.

Kerry, 43, from Sheffield, had begged police to visit the “strange little town” where the accused gypsies live.

She said: “This family have haunted me for two decades. I am convinced they know something about Ben’s disappearance.

“My parents decided to visit this gypsy family and question them regarding their involvement with Ben.

“But on reaching the property the gypsy man was screaming and shouting and threatened to take his gun and shoot them if they didn’t leave.

“Over the past 20 years we have received lots of information about this family from ordinary people living in the same area.

They claim to have seen Ben in the company of the gypsies but were too afraid to contact the Greek police as the family are extremely dangerous.

“I am proud of South Yorkshire police for their determination.

“They are not willing let things be covered up any more”. She had given police a dossier that listed names of eight people who
claim they saw a little boy like Ben living with gypsies in the 1990s.

Det Insp Cousins said his Operation Ben team are more advanced in their probe than they had expected. He added:
“We’ve had a number of trips to mainland Greece and Kos to see people I think are significant to the inquiry.”

The officer said one of those quizzed was Antonis Betzios, a Greek prisoner who phoned a TV show in 1996 naming the gypsy family
as being involved with Ben’s disappearance. Det Insp Cousins said his team spent four hours with Betzios last month in Larissa prison in northern Greece.

He added: “We put to him the account he has given all this time and it has changed quite significantly.”

Police would not confirm how his story had altered but the Mirror understands he told them he made it all up because he had a vendetta
against the family who had taken his son in while he was behind bars.

DI Cousins said: “We need to determine which account we believe.” Kerry, who has met Betzios several times, said: “He was due for release
when he was interviewed so I’m not surprised he’d change his story. He’s terrified of this family.”

in 2012 British police dug up a mound of earth near where Ben was last seen alive.

But he said there are still other “interesting” lines of inquiry in Greece which they have yet to get to.


http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/ben-needham-british-cops-quiz-6126420

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