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Friday, 18 April 2014

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Cumbria police appeal to commuter seen speaking to missing mum

CUMBRIA police looking for missing Catalina Covaci and her baby son Ricardo have launched an appeal to trace a commuter who was seen on CCTV talking her at a Manchester train station.

Em missing Covaci
Police want to speak to the lady seen talking to missing teen mum Catalina Covaci at Manchester Piccadilly.

Officers have released a CCTV image today in the hope  the lady contacts them as she is now the last known person to speak to Ms Covaci on the day she went missing.

The lady is described as wearing a black jacket, a black hat and carrying several black bags and was seen talking to Catalina at Manchester Piccadilly train station. They spoke at around 1.40pm on the afternoon of December 19. CCTV of this conversation is attached.

Detective Inspector Furzana Nazir is coordinating the search for Catalina. She said: “We have been conducting extensive searches and enquiries to trace 15-year-old Catalina and her six-month-old son, Ricardo, who have been missing for almost a month.

“CCTV investigation has revealed that Catalina spoke to a woman when she arrived in Manchester Piccadilly train station on the afternoon she went missing. It is incredibly important that we trace this witness to find out what Catalina said, whether she asked for help or whether she indicated where she may be going.

“We are into the fourth week of her disappearance and concerns are mounting. Her family in Penrith are distressed and we need to ensure that we locate them both – quickly.

“Please, if you were travelling through Manchester Piccadilly on Wednesday  December 19, take a look at this image and see if it was you. Were you travelling home for Christmas? Did you see or speak to a young mum pushing a black pushchair through the station around lunchtime? If you did, please get in touch.

“Anyone at all who thinks they have information about Catalina and Ricardo’s movements or current whereabouts– please come forward and contact us. Even the smallest detail may help so we would encourage anyone who has seen a young girl matching her description to contact Cumbria police on 101. If you want to give information but remain anonymous you can also call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”

Ms Covaci, who is originally from Romania but has resided in Cumbria for the last year-and-a-half, went missing before Christmas. On Wednesday  December 19 she left her Penrith home after telling her guardians she was taking her routine walk into Penrith town centre with her son.

However, Catalina was seen with her son at Penrith Train Station on the morning of Wednesday December 19 and police have established that they travelled on a train from Penrith to Manchester Piccadilly which arrived at around 2.40pm. She hasn’t been seen since.

Ms Covaci is described as having very long straight hair which is often worn in a bun. She is of a medium-heavy build and has a dark complexion.

Last week, police officers turned to international colleagues to help them widen their search as enquiries extended into France. Interpol are assisting Cumbria Constabulary by beginning international enquiries.

Ms Covaci has strong links with various Romanian and travelling communities police officers are using #helpfindcatalina on Twitter in a bid to reach a wider audience and in the hope that the online community will spread the word and come forward with information.

You can view this article and her photograph on Cumbria Constabulary’s website – www.cumbria.police.uk or on our social networking accounts www.twitter.com/cumbriapolice or www.facebook.com/cumbriapolice

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