Grace Millane: New Zealand police to charge man with murder of backpacker

Grace Millane: New Zealand police to charge man with murder of backpacker

New Zealand police are to charge a 26-year-old man for the murder of British backpacker Grace Millane on Saturday, officers said.

The suspect, who was being questioned by police in relation to her disappearance, will remain in police custody until Monday when he will appear at Auckland District Court.

Grace Millane, from the town of Wickford in south-eastern England, was last seen in a hotel in the city of Auckland on Saturday December 1.

Det Insp Scott Beard said that the evidence gathered so far led police to now treat Grace's disappearance as a homicide investigation.

Detective Inspector Scott Beard made this known at a news conference in Auckland.

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

Beard said they don't know where Millane's body is located but they're determined to find it and return it to her family.

Police say Millane was last spotted entering CityLife hotel in Auckland's CBD with a man on Saturday, December 1.

Det Insp Beard added: "We still do not know where Grace is".

"We still do not know where Grace is", Detective Inspector Beard said.

Images of her pale pink watch and silver necklace were released by police after it was noted they were missing from her belongings at the backpackers' hostel where she was staying. He was brought back here to Auckland Central Police Station and is now speaking to us in relation to the murder of Grace Millane.

Millane, from Essex, was described as a "lovely, outgoing, fun-loving, family-orientated daughter" by her father, David Millane.

She was travelling the world after graduating from university in September.

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

A auto seized in relation to Millane's disappearance, meanwhile, appears to be the key piece of evidence in her death, a former police inspector says.

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