Woman to appear in court for abduction of East London toddler

2019-01-03 12:27
SA Police. (Duncan Alfreds, News24, file)

SA Police. (Duncan Alfreds, News24, file)

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A 21-year-old woman will appear in court in East London on Thursday on kidnapping charges, after a missing 2-year-old child was found in a house on New Year's Eve.

The child was taken from her home two weeks ago, allegedly by the suspect, and was returned to her family after she was found by a private investigator and the police.

According to the Daily Dispatch, private investigator Leon Nel was key to finding the girl. It was reportedly Nel who received the tip-off that led to the discovery of the child, just before 00:00 on New Year's Eve.

Eastern Cape police spokesperson Captain Hazel Mqala said she could not comment on the involvement of the investigator, but confirmed that he was present when the child was discovered.

News24 was not immediately able to reach him.

Mqala said the child was found in Mzamomhle, about 15km from where she lived in Southernwood.

According to Mqala, the suspect is known only to the family of the 2-year-old because she had visited one of their neighbours.

Mqala said the child had been taken for a medical examination to determine whether or not she had been harmed, but she was unable to confirm the results of the tests at this stage.

However, the Daily Dispatch reported that the child was unharmed, except for sores on her body.

She was reportedly found underneath a pile of blankets by Nel and the police, whom he had called once he received information about the girl's whereabouts.

The tip-off reportedly led Nel, the child's father and members of the police's K9 Unit to a tavern where the suspect was drinking, and she then led them to the place where the child was being held.

Nel told the publication that he had circulated CCTV footage of the suspect, taken from a local tavern, and that this had led to her positive identification by an informant. 

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Read more on:    east london  |  crime  |  abductions

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