Investigator who probed Nicola Bulley offers services to Jay Slater's family as search targets remote buildings

23 June 2024, 20:17 | Updated: 23 June 2024, 20:24

Detective who probed Nicola Bulley offers services to Jay Slater's family as search for teen enters its second week
Detective who probed Nicola Bulley offers services to Jay Slater's family as search for teen enters its second week. Picture: Alamy

By Danielle de Wolfe

A former detective who probed the disappearance of Nicola Bulley and led an investigation into Jimmy Savile has offered up his services in a bid to locate missing teenager Jay Slater.

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Mark Williams-Thomas's revelatory claims as part of his 2012 documentary led the Met Police to launch Operation Yankee, the first major probe into Saville.

Now, the investigator has revealed he has 'reached out' to Debbie Duncan, the mother of Jay Slater, to offer his help.

It comes as police in Tenerife announced they are starting to close in on a series of small buildings near to where the teenager's phone was last detected.

19-year-old Jay disappeared after attending the 'New Rave Generation' (NRG) festival in Tenerife, choosing to stay behind with a two strangers he had met that evening instead of returning to his apartment with friends.

After a final phone call made to one of his friends, Lucy Mae, at around 8am last Monday, Jay vanished, with his phone running out of battery shortly after.

Friends say that he sounded disorientated during the call, explaining that he was "in the middle of mountains" with "nothing around", she said.

Taking to X this afternoon, Mr Williams-Thomas wrote: "I have this morning reached out to missing Jay Slater's mum offering the help of my team to get her answers as to what has happened to Jay.

Mark Williams-Thomas has revealed he has 'reached out' to Debbie Duncan, the mother of Jay Slater, to offer his help.
Mark Williams-Thomas has revealed he has 'reached out' to Debbie Duncan, the mother of Jay Slater, to offer his help. Picture: Alamy

"Lots of speculation about what could have happened and if they give me total access and with feet on the ground I will very quickly be able to say if his disappearance is him alone or if it has third party involvement."

It comes as the father and brother of 19-year-old Jay Slater, the British teenager who has been missing in Tenerife since Monday, have pleaded for his swift return.

Speaking to Sky News, Warren Slater said he is "just hoping that somebody has helped him off this mountain".

He added: "That's all I want, that somebody has helped him get off this mountain. I just want him back and that's it. He's my son."

His voice began to break as he said the last few days have been "a nightmare, just a nightmare".

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Read more: Jay Slater's mum issues desperate plea after Spanish police reject help in search for missing Brit

Straining to keep his emotions in check, he backed away from the camera, before reiterating: "I just want him back and that's it."

Mr Slater's brother, Zak Slater, echoed the sentiment, saying: "We don't know where he is, what's happened, or anything.

"I don't know what to say. We just want him to come home safe."

He also became emotional as he said: "I just wish he'd come home."

Both have travelled to Tenerife to assist with the search for Jay, who had travelled to the Canary Islands for a weekend music festival with two friends when he disappeared late on Sunday evening.

Yesterday, his mum issued an impassioned plea for her missing son to come home - and suggested Spanish police may feel insulted by Lancashire cops offering to help them in the search.

Asked what her message would be for Mr Slater, she told the PA news agency: "We just need you home - we just need him home."

She said: "I've not slept, I'm exhausted. It's been awful.

"I can't give up on him, I just can't."

Ms Duncan added that she did not know whether the Spanish authorities turning down an offer of help from the UK was because they viewed it as "an insult".

Jay Slater's last location was the Rural De Teno park
Jay Slater's last location was the Rural De Teno park. Picture: Getty

Questioned on whether the Spanish authorities should have accepted help from Lancashire Constabulary, Ms Duncan said: "I believe they said they've got enough resources and they don't need the help from English police.

"I don't know if they find it an insult - I really don't know. I really don't know.

"They say they've got enough resources to get on with the investigation... I don't know, I don't know.

Spanish police rejected help from Lancashire Constabulary as the desperate search for missing Brit Jay Slater in Tenerife continues.

The focus area of the search for Jay reportedly moved to the ravine area in the Masca Valley on Friday - around 100 metres down below a rental property he visited after the festival.

Lancashire Constabulary confirmed that it had offered to assist in the search for Jay but Spanish police turned them down.

In a statement, the force said: "First and foremost, our thoughts are with Jay's family at this time.

"They must be going through the most distressing ordeal not knowing what has happened to their loved one.

"We have specialist officers who are continuing to support Jay's family.

"Whilst this case falls outside the jurisdiction of UK policing, we have made an offer of support to the Guardia Civil to see if they need any additional resources.

"They have confirmed that at this time they are satisfied that they have the resources they need, but that offer remains open and they will contact us should that position change.

"Once again, our thoughts remain with Jay's family and friends at this distressing time."

It comes after Jay's friends criticised Spanish police for "not doing a good enough job".

Lucy told The Times: "We were driving around the island for 12 hours. We have been everywhere you can imagine, up and down the mountain several times and searching spots that he might have sheltered in.

"We are having to do this all by ourselves as Spanish police are not doing a good enough job. They don’t even speak English.

"It’s been a very slow process here so we need the British police to come out and help them.”

The owner of the flat where Jay had visited after the festival said she spotted him "walking fast" up a dangerous ravine.

Ophelia, who owns Casa Abuela Tina, said she was "very worried" about him following his disappearance.

She said she saw him walk off on his own in a mountainous area near Masca.

"It’s dangerous walking around here, it’s easy to lose yourself," she told Manchester Evening News.

"He walked up the road when I saw him for the last time.

"He was alone. He was walking normally, though he was fast."

On Thursday night, the Spanish Civil Guard shared a video of their search efforts for Jay.

Sharing the footage to X, they wrote: “The search for the young British man missing in the Masca neighbourhood of Buenavista (Tenerife) continues, in which different units of the Civil Guard participate.”

The footage showed officers scouring different expanses of the mountainous region by foot, car and helicopter.

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