Missing boy found in France returns to Britain – police

Missing boy found in France returns to Britain – police

/ 07:29 AM December 17, 2023

Alex Batty, the British teenager who resurfaced in southern France after disappearing six years ago, returns to Britain.

An undated still image shows Alex Batty, from Greater Manchester, Britain, who went missing in 2017, and has been found in France. Greater Manchester Police/Handout via REUTERS/File Photo

MANCHESTER, England — Alex Batty, the British teenager who resurfaced in southern France after disappearing six years ago, returned to Britain on Saturday, local police said.

The boy, who left a spiritualist community in the Pyrenees mountains, disappeared at the age of 11 during a holiday with his mother and grandfather in Malaga, Spain, in 2017. He is now 17.


READ: British teen, missing for six years, found in France – prosecutors


Greater Manchester Police said the teenager met with a relative and police officers, who accompanied him on his journey back to Britain.

“It gives me great pleasure to say that Alex has now made his safe return to the UK after six years,” Matt Boyle, assistant chief constable, told reporters.

Batty  left the United Kingdom in September 2017 for a pre-agreed family holiday in Spain. He was last seen in Spain on October 8 that year when they were expected to return home, according to police.

The La Depeche du Midi regional newspaper said he had been found by a student named Fabien Accidini after the youngster had been wandering for some four days in the mountainous area.

Accidini, who delivers medicines to pharmacies in the area, said it was raining hard when he picked up Alex Batty and eventually told his story.

“He said that his mother had kidnapped him when he was around 12,” the student told La Depeche.


“Since then, he had lived in Spain in a luxury house with around ten people. He would have arrived in France around 2021.”

He had lived with his mother in a “spiritual community” in France and had “no animosity towards her but wanted to go back to his grandmother,” said Accidini.

La Depeche said he lived in France with his mother and grandfather in a “nomadic community” nearby Aude and Ariege departments. With reports from Agence France-Presse


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TAGS: Britain, France, missing boy

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