Police 'focused' on April search

Blackpool Citizen: Detective Superintendent Reg Bevan holding up a photo of Mark Bridger who has been arrested during the probe into the abduction of April Jones Detective Superintendent Reg Bevan holding up a photo of Mark Bridger who has been arrested during the probe into the abduction of April Jones

Police are "in no way scaling back their operation" in the search for April Jones and remain "completely focused and committed" to finding the five-year-old, officers have said.

Detective Superintendent Reg Bevan from Dyfed Powys Police said information about arrested man Mark Bridger, 46, and his blue Land Rover Discovery remains important, but there are various other leads.

He said they have interviewed the 46-year-old twice and are looking into his past to build up a profile.

Mr Bevan said: "While these are clearly a significant line of inquiry, I must emphasise that there are many other leads that we are actively pursuing in an effort to find April."

The force has received more than 400 calls since making an appeal for information earlier and is focusing on 20 scenes including houses, outbuildings, open areas and riverbanks around Machynlleth.

Superintendent Ian John said the search for April was "continuing to grow and grow at quite a pace".

"This is a growing operation and in no way are we scaling back our search and we remain completely focused and committed to finding April," he told reporters.

The force has 100 mountain rescue volunteers, more than 100 police-trained search officers, 20 dog handlers, two boats from the RNLI, a team of kayakers and the force's marine unit taking part in the search. Three UK experts have also been drafted in to help with the hunt.

Asked what he thought the likelihood is of finding April alive, Mr John said: "Our efforts are completely focused on doing that and we will continue to do that. I don't want to speculate and put any kind of time limit on that."

The focus of the interviews with Mr Bridger has been trying to find any information about where April is, Mr Bevan said. The senior officer would not reveal what the 46-year-old had said to avoid jeopardising the search.

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