Sunday 16 December 2018

Girl (4) who disappeared from London found in Spain

Elliana Shand Photo: Family handout/PA Wire
Elliana Shand Photo: Family handout/PA Wire Newsdesk Newsdesk

A four-year-old girl who has been found in Spain after going missing with her schizophrenic mother during the summer is expected to return to England in the next few days.

Elliana Shand had been at the centre of private family court litigation.

She had disappeared from her London home with her mother Jessica Richards, who is in her mid-twenties, after social services staff at Barking and Dagenham Council raised concerns about her care.

A judge who has overseen the case at hearings in the Family Division of the High Court in London had said he was very concerned for Elliana's safety and made public appeals for help.

Mr Justice Hayden said on Friday that Elliana had been found safe and well with her mother in Spain by Spanish police.

He praised work done by Spanish and British police, and Foreign Office staff, and indicated that plans were in place to return Elliana to England within the next few days.

The judge also praised Elliana's paternal grandparents Sean and Eileen Doyle, who are both in their fifties and live in the Wembley area of London, for the efforts they had made to trace the youngster.

Mr Doyle, a Liverpool fan who campaigns for victims of the Hillsborough disaster, had mounted an internet campaign and begged people to help find Elliana.

Press Association

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