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Former Met Detective Says It's Likely Missing Four-Year-Old Cleo Was Abducted

Former Met Detective Says It's Likely Missing Four-Year-Old Cleo Was Abducted

Dr Hill went on to explain the first few hours of a missing child investigation are the most crucial.

A former Scotland Yard detective who worked on the Madeleine McCann case, fears four-year-old Cleo Smith could have been abducted.

Cleo vanished from her family's tent in the Australian Outback last week. The family were staying at a campsite near Macleoad, but when they woke at 6am, Cleo had disappeared.

Cleo vanished while camping with her family (
WA Police)

Police in the area believe Cleo could have been abducted - a theory that Criminologist and former Met detective Dr Graham Hill agrees with.

He told The Western Australia: “Bearing in mind she’s only a small little girl, she’s not going to get that far. Little girls and boys get tired really quick and in the middle of the night they are half asleep anyway.

“The real complication, from what I can see, is the fact that her sleeping bag’s gone missing. I would say it’s a remote chance that she’s got up wandered off and taken her sleeping bag with her.

“But I think that’s highly unlikely because there’d be some disturbance. You’d see where she dragged the sleeping bag, and how far is a four-year-old child going to get in the dark?”

When Cleo's parents woke, she was missing (
ABC News)

Dr Hill went on to explain the first few hours of a missing child investigation are the most crucial, adding that everyone on the campsite needs to be identified and spoken to, either because they could be a suspect, or a witness.

Investigators fear Cleo could have been abducted due to the fact the tent zip would have been too high for Cleo to open herself. This week it was also reported that up to 20 known sex offenders live in the area, and a car was heard screeching near the campsite.

“The positioning of that zipper for the flap is one of the circumstances that has caused us to have grave concerns for Cleo’s safety," said Inspector Jon Munday.

Investigators have been searching the area for days (
ABC News)

Cleo was wearing a bright pink pyjama suit with flowers and butterflies (as seen in the image above) when she was last seen by her parents at 1.30am.

Featured Image Credit: 9News

Topics: News