Children 'being targeted' for abduction at Cyprus resort

An investigation has been launched after a British family was targeted by three people who apparently attempted to abduct children from a popular holiday resort in Cyprus.

Children 'being targeted' for abduction at Cyprus resort

An investigation has been launched after a British family was targeted by three people who apparently attempted to abduct children from a popular holiday resort in Cyprus.

Tour operator Thomas Cook said they were working closely with authorities after the incident on June 16 at the Anastasia beach complex in Protaras.

Britain's Foreign and Commonwealth Office described it as a “concerning incident” and confirmed they had provided assistance to a family.

1.30pm Update: Tsokkos Hotels has since issued a statement on the matter.

One of the hotel guests on June 16, 2015, around 20.30 hrs had informed the reception that a non-resident was filming and taking pictures around the adult entertainment area.

Immediately the hotel security went to the location and escorted the man involved at the hotel manager's office. The police was immediately notified and arrived at the scene.

The police officers interrogated the man and checked his mobile phone.

They found a video of the evening dancing show that was taking place at the entertainment area. The officers then escorted the man with the police car to the police station for further investigations.

His mobile phone as well as his laptop and house has been inspected and nothing suspicious was found.

According to police investigation the claims of child abduction are completely unjustifiable and invalid as nothing was found to suggest that the person involved intended to carry out such an act.

The 19-year-old man involved in the above incident is not an employee of the hotel and is not a known person to either the management or staff.

The safety and welfare of our guests is always our first priority and upon becoming aware of the incident, we immediately increased the security personnel at the hotel as well as deployed more management members throughout the property to offer all in house guests assistance and any other support needed.

Cypriot Police deputy spokeswoman Nikoletta Tyrimou told the Cyprus Mail: “We questioned the suspect, went through his phone and also searched his home.

“Nothing we found suggests that he is part of a child-abducting gang or that he was stalking children.

“He has since been released while police take statements from all those present at the scene.”

Greg Letford, 28, who was part of a wedding party from Dundee staying at the hotel, told the Daily Record newspaper a couple had led two young children towards a waiting car and another person had a “third child up against a wall ready to go, too”.

He told the newspaper: “Someone spotted what they were up to and stopped them. If he hadn’t been there, those kids would have gone.

“When the police turned up, they took the man and woman into an office in the hotel.”

The Daily Record reported that the children involved were under 10 years old.

A Thomas Cook spokeswoman said: “The safety and welfare of our customers is always our first priority and upon hearing about the incident we immediately deployed our experienced resort team to the property to provide those customers in residence with individual support.

“Customers who did not wish to stay at the property were immediately moved to alternative hotels of a similar or higher standard.

“While incidents of this nature are extremely rare, we would like to reassure all customers that this is being taken incredibly seriously and we are continuing to work closely with the local authorities and the hotel as the investigation continues."

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