Military police meet with family of toddler missing for 36 years

THE family of missing Katrice Lee has met with military police over the toddler's disappearance nearly 37 years ago.

Wednesday, 14th March 2018, 5:00 am
Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage with Katrice's sister Natasha and campaigners Sian Jebb, mum Sharon Lee and Wendy Gray, delivering letters about Katrina's case to Number 10 Downing Street in 2012

Little Katrice Lee was two when she vanished in November 1981, in Paderborn, West Germany, while out shopping with her mum, Sharon Lee, from Gosport.

Her family, including father Richie Lee, met with Royal Military Police officers re-investigating the case yesterday.

Katrice’s family, including her sister Natasha, have long criticised the initial investigation and demanded to see the case files.

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Katrice Lee, who was two when she disappeared in Germany 36 years ago

The RMP is carrying out Operation Bute, the re-investigation. In 2012, senior officials admitted mistakes in the initial investigation were made.

Last month Mr Lee met with the defence secretary Gavin Williamson, who arranged a meeting with the RMP for yesterday.

Speaking to our sister newspaper the Hartlepool Mail, Mr Lee says he had informed RMP officers at the time of the disappearance of a distinctive problem with Katrice’s eye and how he wanted the borders to be locked down.

He said: ‘I told the investigation team in my opening brief I am sceptical and will remain sceptical however we have crossed that first hurdle.

Katrice's father, Richie

‘This investigation team in no way is at fault.

‘What this investigation team is having to do is clean up the mess that occurred in the past.

‘I have pointed out unless they now clear up the past then I struggle to move on to the future.’

Mr Lee, who was a serving soldier posted in West Germany at the time of his daughter’s disappearance, said he had a five-hour presentation from the RMP at the meeting on Monday.

Katrice Lee, who was two when she disappeared in Germany 36 years ago

He is due to meet again with the defence secretary next month.

Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage has been campaigning for the case to be re-investigated.

She said: ‘I have long supported the families calls for answers in this desperately upsetting incident.

‘I fought hard to get the case reopened with the Royal Military Police and I’m pleased that is has been given renewed focus and priority under the new secretary of state Gavin Williamson.

Katrice's father, Richie

‘I will continue to follow this closely.’

As reported, family and supporters marched on Downing Street in a bid to demand the RMP open its case files. The case was on BBC Crimewatch last year.