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Friday 22 August 2014

'Mystery GPO girl' returned to Ireland under new name

Published 05/06/2014 | 02:30

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Samantha Azzopardi
Samantha Azzopardi
Mystery Australian woman
Superintendent David Taylor of the Garda Press Office and Orla Ryan, Guardian Ad Litem of the girl with a Garda hand out picture of the Australian woman

An Australian woman – who sparked a Garda investigation as the ‘mystery GPO girl’ last year – has allegedly returned to Ireland to work as an au pair.

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Gardai have received a report that Samantha Azzopardi  (25) spent five weeks in the midlands caring for two children under a new identity.

She came to national attention last November when she was found in a distressed state on O’Connell Street.

She was initially believed to be a 14-year-old girl but it later transpired that she had a conviction for deception in Australia and used up to 40 different aliases.

It has now been claimed that Ms Azzopardi re-entered Ireland more than two months ago under a different name.

A couple in the midlands claim they hired her to work as an au pair for them minding their two young children.

She left the family in recent weeks after which they found various documents with the name Samantha Azzopardi and other aliases.

According to the parents, Ms Azzopardi worked for the family for approximately six weeks after they hired her through an online au pair agency where it seemed she was completely valid.

It was after she left that the parents noticed a chain of events and various incidences that ‘didn’t add up’.

She left the house only once during that period and regularly cooked dinner.

The au pair is understood to have stopped working for the family three weeks ago and they said they believe she has travelled back to Australia.

The father explained that the woman had dozens of social media account under different names.

They have reported the matter to gardai and presented the documents they found to gardai in recent days.

The Herald has confirmed that gardai based in the midlands received a report that the woman was back in Ireland.

“This link was made by members of the public rather than gardai.

“We are not aware that this woman is the subject of any outstanding court orders and as such it is not a matter this is being investigated as a criminal issue,” a senior source said.

Last year, after her age and identity were established, she voluntarily returned to Australia.

At the time of the investigation into her identity last November it emerged that she has a previous conviction for deception in Australia.

Joyce Fegan and Ken Foy

Irish Independent

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