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Police scour land in search for tragic Lisa Dorrian

By Laura Abernethy

Published 16/02/2016

Police undertake fresh searches for the body of Lisa Dorrian in Comber, Co Down, yesterda
Police undertake fresh searches for the body of Lisa Dorrian in Comber, Co Down, yesterda
Police undertake fresh searches for the body of Lisa Dorrian in Comber, Co Down, yesterda
Lisa Dorrian

Police have begun searching land outside Comber in Co Down in a bid to end the agonising 11-year wait to find the body of murdered Lisa Dorrian.

The dig is the latest in an extensive investigation for the 25-year-old Bangor woman who disappeared after a party at a caravan park in Ballyhalbert in 2005.

Despite a land and sea search, Lisa's remains have never been found but police believe she was murdered.

The search at Newtownards Road has been undertaken as a result of new information being provided to the investigation team.

The officer in charge of the probe, Detective Chief Inspector Justyn Galloway, said: "We will be deploying a significant range and amount of resources over the next few days. These will include search teams, body recovery dogs and ground probes. Other equipment and experts are available, if required.

"Lisa's family are being kept fully informed about our enquiries. The search may yield nothing but we feel it is appropriate to act on this new information."

The investigation into Lisa's disappearance and murder has involved the identification of more than 4,000 witnesses, statements from more than 571 people, 275 searches and eight arrests on suspicion of murder.

DCI Galloway said: "This is the latest search in an extensive investigative programme and demonstrates our commitment to act on information which has been provided to us by someone who is not interested in publicity.

"Our enquiries will continue and I would again appeal to the small group of individuals who know what happened to Lisa to tell us precisely what they know before we come to them."

Last year murderer Jimmy Seales, in an interview with Sunday Life, claimed to know the location of Lisa's body. He is serving a minimum 15-year term for the murder of Philip Strickland who died after being shot in the face near Comber in 2012.

He said that her body was put into a 40-gallon container, the lid of which was welded shut before it was hidden on land at Ballygowan. Last month, a shot was fired through the window of his 86-year-old mother's home in Comber.

Police said that the land being searched "is not owned by anyone with a public profile".

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