Saturday 24 March 2018

Police to break down wall of bar in 'cold case' hunt for missing teenager

Nathalie Mazot was 14 when she went missing in 1982
Nathalie Mazot was 14 when she went missing in 1982

Rory Mulholland

After years of campaigning by a distraught mother, French police have been ordered to break down the wall of a basement in a bar in Lyon where she believes the body of her murdered teenage daughter has been hidden since 1982.

The girl, Nathalie Mazot, was 14 when she went missing. She used to frequent the bar with her older sister, who two months after the disappearance shot herself in the head and left a note saying: "Sorry mum."

The 19-year-old was pregnant when she killed herself.

Police investigated Nathalie's disappearance but after finding no leads put the case on hold.

Nathalie's mother, Yolande Guyot, was convinced that her daughter had been abducted, raped, tortured and then had her body hidden in a small enclosure behind a wall in the bar that at the time was called Les Antiquaires.

Police questioned the bar owner several times but no charges were brought and the investigation was again put on hold.

In 2008, it was reopened and the following year police bored two small holes into the basement wall but gave up when they found nothing suspicious.


Ms Guyot (77), convinced that officers had not done their job properly, began a series of court actions to make them look again at the basement. Her battle paid off this week when a judge ordered police to go back to the bar to resume their investigation.

"My client is very moved by this decision and is relieved that she may now finally find out the truth," Ingrid Botella, her lawyer, told reporters.

"The interest of finding a body is not only to be able to give it a grave but also to continue the investigations" into the girl's fate, she said. (© Daily Telegraph London)

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