Grace Millane: Backpacker’s disappearance being treated as suspected murder

Grace Millane's family say they are staying positive and hope she returns home soon

SUPPLIEDGrace Millane's family say they are staying positive and hope she returns home soon

Police in New Zealand believe that a British backpacker who went missing a week ago has been murdered.

She had been in contact with her family almost every day until December 1, the day before her birthday.

"The evidence we have located so far, our scene examination, some of the CCTV footage we have, and our investigation, has determined that Grace is no longer alive and that this is a murder investigation", Auckland City Police Detective Inspector Scott Beard said.

More than two dozen police officers have been investigating the 22-year-old's disappearance since she was reported missing earlier this week.

Grace was last seen wearing a black dress with white sneakers on Queen Street, in Auckland's CBD, at around 9.41pm last Saturday.

Police said they were still looking for Ms Millane, although evidence pointed to the fact she had been killed.

Her other belongings had remained this week at Base Backpackers, where she had been booked in to stay until today.

Grace last made contact with her family last Saturday, December 1.

Investigators had said yesterday that they held "grave fears" for Grace's safety.

After visiting Peru she arrived in New Zealand on November 20 and had been near-daily contact with her family until December 1.

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(AAP) Missing British backpacker Grace Millane has been murdered, police in New Zealand say.

"He was brought back to the Auckland Central Police Station and is now speaking to us in relation to the murder of Grace Millane".

"Many of these calls have been from members of the public, offering accommodation and assistance to the Millane family".

Police released images of Ms Millane's watch and necklace earlier on Saturday.

Beard said "that property is going to be somewhere, the clothing is going to be somewhere, we haven't found it".

'Several of her belongings, including her passport, are missing and police believe it is likely Grace has these items with her'.

Her father, a 60-year-old property developer, fought back tears as he urged anyone who has any information about his "outgoing, fun-loving" daughter to come forward.

"We've spoken to David [Grace's father] we've met him, but there is family in the United Kingdom and our hearts go out to them as well".

In a tearful press conference on Friday, Grace's father, who has travelled to Auckland, said the "fun-loving" graduate's family are "extremely concerned" for her welfare.

Anyone with information about the missing items has been advised to contact 0800 676 255.

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