Man arrested over MURDER of British backpacker Grace Millane in New Zealand

Grace Millane

Police say they are questioning a 26-year-old man who was seen with her on the night of her disappearance.

Officers searching for 22-year-old Grace Millane are now "conducting a scene examination" at an apartment in the Citylife Hotel, Queen Street, Auckland.

"Grace's family has been advised of this development and they're devastated" Beard told the media.

Ms Millane, who turned 22 on Sunday, was last seen with a 'male companion'at CityLife Hotel, in Auckland, on December 1.

Miss Millane's body has not yet been found, but Det Insp Beard said police were "determined to do all we can to find her".

He added: "I know that the thoughts of all New Zealanders will be with Grace's family tonight".

Her passport is also missing.

'Finally I would like to take this opportunity to appeal to anybody who has seen, spoken to or come into contact with Grace over the last few days to come forward with any detail no matter how small and contact the investigation team'.

"We know that they were together from the time at the Sky City Hotel".

New Zealand police confirmed on Saturday afternoon they are treating the investigation as a homicide.

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

He said: "As part of our investigation, we have reviewed hours and hours of CCTV footage and this will continue throughout the weekend".

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

Her father, David Millane, said they last had contact on the day she vanished.

The man was with her on Saturday evening, but Beard didn't know if the pair knew each other before then.

"The family are devastated, everybody who is a parent out there will understand what this family is going through".

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

"At this point our enquiries have not led us to any further confirmed sightings of Grace, and the last known sighting is of her entering the Citylife Hotel", he said.

Fighting back tears, he spoke to media about the "lovely, outgoing, fun-loving, family-orientated daughter" who had been so looking forward to going to New Zealand and had "bombarded us with numerous photographs and messages of her adventures" since arriving.

Anyone with information that could help with the investigation has been asked to contact 0800 676 255.

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