Saturday 23 September 2017

Lisa Dorrian: Fresh searches for body of missing hairdresser who disappeared 11 years ago

Lisa Dorrian disappeared almost 11 years ago PSNI/PA Wire
Lisa Dorrian disappeared almost 11 years ago PSNI/PA Wire
Undated handout photo issued by Police Service of Northern Ireland of police undertaking fresh searches for the body of Lisa Dorrian who disappeared almost 11 years ago. PSNI/PA Wire
Undated handout photo issued by Police Service of Northern Ireland of police undertaking fresh searches for the body of Lisa Dorrian who disappeared almost 11 years ago. PSNI/PA
Undated handout photo issued by Police Service of Northern Ireland of fresh searches which the police have undertaken for the body of Lisa Dorrian who disappeared almost 11 years ago. PSNI/PA Wire

David Young

Police have undertaken fresh searches for the body of a missing hairdresser who disappeared almost 11 years ago.

Lisa Dorrian, 25, from Bangor, Co Down, vanished after a party on a caravan site 20 miles away in the coastal village of Ballyhalbert on the Ards peninsula on February 28 2005.

Police believe she was murdered.

Despite a series of arrests, the identification of around 4,000 potential witnesses and more than 275 searches, no-one has been brought to justice.

Detectives from the Police Service of Northern Ireland's serious crime branch conducted searches on land outside Comber, Co Down, on Monday.

They said the ongoing operation at the Newtownards Road had been prompted by "new information being provided to the investigation team".

Undated handout photo issued by Police Service of Northern Ireland of police undertaking fresh searches for the body of Lisa Dorrian who disappeared almost 11 years ago. PSNI/PA Wire
Undated handout photo issued by Police Service of Northern Ireland of police undertaking fresh searches for the body of Lisa Dorrian who disappeared almost 11 years ago. PSNI/PA Wire

While the general location was searched four years ago for a vehicle linked to the murder, the new investigations are focused solely on finding human remains and are concentrated on a different section of land.

The officer in charge of the investigation, detective chief inspector Justyn Galloway, said: "We will be deploying a significant range and amount of resources over the next few days.

Undated handout photo issued by Police Service of Northern Ireland of police undertaking fresh searches for the body of Lisa Dorrian who disappeared almost 11 years ago. PSNI/PA
Undated handout photo issued by Police Service of Northern Ireland of police undertaking fresh searches for the body of Lisa Dorrian who disappeared almost 11 years ago. PSNI/PA

"These will include search teams, body recovery dogs and ground probes. Other equipment and experts are available, if required.

"Lisa's family are being kept fully informed about our enquiries. The search may yield nothing but we feel it is appropriate to act on this new information.

"This is the latest search in an extensive investigative programme and demonstrates our commitment to act on information which has been provided to us by someone who is not interested in publicity.

"Our enquiries will continue and I would again appeal to the small group of individuals who know what happened to Lisa to tell us precisely what they know before we come to them."

Lisa's mother Pat died in December without ever finding out what happened to her daughter.

Mrs Dorrian, 59, and her husband John led a decade-long quest to find Lisa's remains.

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