Man to be charged with Grace Millane's murder

Charles Thomson

A man will be charged with the murder of 22-year-old British backpacker Grace Millane, New Zealand police have confirmed.

The 22-year-old from Essex hasn't been seen since she entered downtown Auckland's CityLife Hotel in the company of a 26-year-old man last Saturday evening.

This afternoon police said they had assessed Millane's property left at the backpackers where she was staying - and found some items missing.

Det Insp Scott Beard said evidence they had located so far told them Grace was "no longer alive".

Grace Millane's father David said his daughter had been excited about coming to New Zealand and had bombarded the family with images of her adventures since arriving. "We are determined to find her and return her to her family".

Ms Millane was in New Zealand on a gap year, having arrived in the country on November 20.

Police want the public to help find this necklace belonging to backpacker Grace Millane.

Police said enquiries into Grace's disappearance have not led to further confirmed sightings of her.

He said Millane's family had been told and they were "devastated".

Officers have conducted a scene examination at an apartment at the CityLife Hotel and were trawling through "hundreds" of hours of CCTV footage as part of the investigation.

Grace last made contact with her family last Saturday, December 1.

"We still do not know where Grace is".

Grace Millane: Police start murder inquiry

Millane called his daughter a "fun-loving, family-oriented daughter" and urged anyone with information to contact police.

Her father David has flown to New Zealand, where he today gave a press conference.

In a statement released on Saturday morning (New Zealand time), they said it had been "an extremely hard and emotional time for us all".

The 26-year-old being questioned is the person of interest police mentioned yesterday.

"I would just like to take this opportunity to appeal to anybody who has seen, spoken to, or come into contact with Grace over the last few days, to come forward with any detail, no matter how small, and contact the investigation team", he said.

This was her first time travelling overseas alone.

Detective Beard said Millane's case has been tough, at the press conference.

She failed to check in with family, which is very out of character for her, they say.

He tearfully explained that his daughter has never been out of contact with her family for such a long period of time, usually contacting them on social media.

Anyone with information about the missing items has been advised to contact 0800 676 255.

Millane's father David, a millionaire property developer, flew into New Zealand early yesterday.

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