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Police probe four ‘abduction’ attempts

Police are investigating four separate reports of attempted abduction of children in east Belfast since the weekend, all involving a man in a silver car.

Three men have allegedly tried to abduct a nine-year-old girl in the Lord Street area on Tuesday.

A separate incident occurred on Euston Street at the weekend when a man in a silver Audi car |attempted to kidnap two 10-year- old boys.

Two further reports of suspicious activity were received by police after 11am yesterday (Wednesday). A male in a silver car pulled along side a 10 year old boy in Clarawood Park, and asked him to get into the car. The boy did not and travelled on.

A male in a silver coloured car was also seen acting suspiciously in the Beersbridge Road area yesterday morning.

Tuesday night’s incident |occurred between 7.20pm and 8pm at Trillick Street and also |involved a silver car.

The girl involved, Sophie Neill, told the Community Telegraph: “I was walking home and some man got out of a car as I walked past. He started chasing me towards my street. He left me at the end of my street and ran off down Lord Street.

“I was very scared at the time, but feel better now,” she added.

Her mother, Alison McBride said: “When she came into the house she was in hysterics.

“A man who got out of a silver car chased her up the street. There were three people in the silver car,” she said.

“Two policewomen came up. They said they were aware of the silver car and they said they would step up patrols in the area.

“My wee girl is terrified, she's only nine and a half years old.

“These people are scum bags and I hope they are caught.”

She said she had had to take Sophie to school and collect her again, she was so frightened. “I don't know who was worse between the two of us,” she added.

Castlereagh Central councillor Michael Copeland said: “Incidents like this spread fear and suspicion amongst society; nevertheless fear and suspicion can be dissipated if parents make every effort to know where their children are and who they are with at all times.

“Anyone who sees anything suspicious should immediately contact the police.”

A PSNI spokeswoman confirmed they are investigating a number of suspicious incidents in the area in recent days.

Anyone who may have any |information can contact officers in Strandtown on 0845 600 8000 or the Crimestoppers charity on 0800 555 111.

Belfast Telegraph