Garden examined in murdered Eastbourne woman case

Natalia Doherty (right) and ex-husband Gerald
Natalia Doherty (right) and ex-husband Gerald

A garden at a property is being examined by police officers investigating the disappearance of a 50-year-old woman from Eastbourne who police now believe was murdered.

Natalia Doherty was last seen on April 15 2003 in Eastbourne, where she was living at the time.

A house in Luton was searched in September as part of the investigation.

Two men were later arrested and bailed in connection with the disappearance.

A Luton man, aged 66, and a 71-year-old man from Port Glasgow, Inverclyde, were detained on suspicion of assisting an offender and preventing a lawful burial.

Officers said ground survey work was now being carried out on the surface of the garden to see if the ground had been disturbed.

Detectives believe that near to the date she was last seen alive, Ms Doherty - who was also known by the surnames Wilkanowska and Logan - was thought to have travelled to Luton to stay with her ex-husband, Gerald Doherty, who has since died - at the Regents Arms in Hastings Street.

But there were no confirmed sightings of the mother-of-three in the town.

Officers from the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire major crime unit launched an investigation in January 2014 into the case, which has led them to believe Ms Doherty was murdered.

A police spokesman said, “Inquiries have since failed to show any sign she is alive.”

Investigators are keen to trace her final movements and has asked anyone who recognises her or Mr Doherty from their time at the now-demolished pub, or has any information relating to her disappearance, to contact them.

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