London

Alice Gross search: Police find a body in river

Alice Gross Image copyright Met
Image caption A body found in the River Brent has been removed from the scene

Police investigating the disappearance of teenager Alice Gross say a body has been found in a west London river.

Officers recovered the body from the River Brent on Tuesday night, the Metropolitan Police have confirmed.

The 14-year-old's family have been updated on the development. Alice, from Hanwell, was last seen on 28 August.

Formal identification is yet to take place. A post-mortem examination will be scheduled in due course, police said.

Alice was last captured on CCTV walking along the towpath next to the Grand Union Canal as it passes under Trumpers Way at 4.26pm, but has not been seen since.

Convicted murderer Arnis Zalkalns, 41, from Latvia, remains the prime suspect in the case. He was filmed cycling along the canal 15 minutes after Alice and went missing from his Ealing home on 3 September.

Image copyright PA
Image caption London Fire Brigade Urban Search and Rescue teams searched the River Brent on Tuesday

The RAF had been drafted in to help police search for her and provide "aerial analysis" to locate areas that should be searched.

It is just over a month since Alice failed to return home to her family, sparking a huge search operation.

A reconstruction of the last known movements of missing Alice was staged in west London. It followed three parts of her last known movements and attracted 150 phone calls from members of the public with possible information.

Alice's parents urged anyone with information to "please, please help us". In a statement at the time, they said they were "desperately concerned" for her welfare and "every morning brings new agony".

Previously, Scotland Yard said it had identified Elthorne Park, west London, as an "area of interest" in its investigation, but later said it was "not of relevance".

The hunt for Alice, from Hanwell, west London, is the largest Met Police search operation since the 7/7 terrorist bombings in 2005, with 600 officers from eight forces involved.

Officers have searched 25 sq km (10 sq miles) of open land and 5.5km (3 miles) of canals and rivers.

More than 630 calls have been made by the public and police had asked anyone with CCTV footage to come forward.

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