Missing British backpacker, 22, was murdered; man to be charged, police say

Missing British backpacker, 22, was murdered; man to be charged, police say

Police will charge a 26-year-old man with the murder of missing backpacker Grace Millane. The murder suspect, a 26-year old man, is scheduled to appear at Auckland district court on Monday, The Guardian reports.

The Millane family have requested privacy at this time and will not be making any further statements at this stage.

"Sadly the evidence we have gathered to this point of the inquiry has established that this is a homicide", Detective Inspector Scott Beard told reporters earlier on Saturday.

"I want to reassure the public police are determined to do everything we can to find her".

After visiting Peru, she arrived in New Zealand on November 20 and had been in near-daily contact with her family until December 1 - the day before her 22nd birthday.

"Grace's watch is a pale pink Casio Baby-G and her necklace is described as silver and round with a green stone in the middle of it".

"We know that he was with her on the Saturday evening and went to a number of places before going to the Citylife Hotel", Mr Beard said.

He added that Ms Millane's family were "devastated" by the development and said: "We still do not know where Grace is".

"We have no understanding of what the motive was".

Police had identified and found a vehicle of interest and officers were trying to find out where it had been, he said.

Grace Millane: Police start murder inquiry

Police said they were still looking for Ms Millane, an advertising and marketing graduate from Billericay, Essex, but all the evidence pointed to her having been killed.

"Of course it's tough, everyone who is a parent out there will understand and appreciate what that family is going through", Beard said.

She failed to check in with family, which is very out of character for her, they say.

Detective Inspector Scott Beard, from Auckland City Police, said at a press conference today: "Grace is no longer alive and this is a murder investigation".

More than 25 Police staff are now working on the investigation into the disappearance.

'Grace is a lovely, outgoing, fun-loving and family orientated daughter'.

Ms Millane left the United Kingdom six weeks ago to travel the world after finishing university.

"We sort of noticed Gracie hadn't really texted back or hadn't read anything, which was obviously really odd because it was her birthday".

This was her first time travelling overseas alone.

More news: Murray Wins Davey O'Brien Award

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