Saanich police are reissuing a plea for information on the third birthday of a girl who was allegedly abducted by one of her mothers.
A Canada-wide warrant was issued for Lauren Etchells, a dual Canadian and United Kingdom citizen, after she allegedly defied a court order and flew to London with her daughter Kaydance Etchells in May 2016. Police said in April 2016, Etchells got a passport for Kaydance. Police determined that on May 8, 2016, Etchells and Kaydance boarded WestJet Flight 22 from Vancouver to London Gatwick Airport, along with Etchells’ partner, Marco van der Merwe and their newborn child Marcus.
They determined that on May 8, 2016, Etchells and Kaydance boarded WestJet Flight 22 from Vancouver to London Gatwick Airport, along with Etchells’ partner, Marco van der Merwe and their newborn child Marcus.
According to police, an August 2015 court order stated that Etchells had to surrender Kaydance’s United Kingdom passport, that she was not to apply for a Canadian passport for Kaydance and could not leave Vancouver Island. Etchells and her wife Tasha Brown had Kaydance through a donor process in 2014, but the couple separated in 2015.
Etchells, who gave birth to Kaydance, had full custody. Brown had visitation rights and was fighting for joint custody. She contacted police on May 14, 2016 after Etchells did not bring Kaydance for visitation.
Now, Brown has put together a new YouTube video, pleading with people in Europe to keep an eye out for Etchells’ partner.
Police said van der Merwe is now believed to be in the Netherlands. He is considered a person of interest in the investigation and Saanich police said detectives are attempting to find him as he may be able to provide information about the whereabouts of Kaydance and Etchells. He was born in South Africa and raised in Qatar.
Saanich police are working with Interpol, the RCMP National Centre for Missing Persons and Unidentified Remains, the Canadian Centre for Child Protection and the B.C. Criminal Justice Branch. According to Saanich police, Etchells, Kaydance and Marcus travelled from England to France but they are now travelling on passports issued by the United Kingdom. All three have not been seen since mid-to-late May of last year.
Anyone with information on Kaydance’s whereabouts is asked to call the Saanich police information line at 1-888-980-1919, Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477or the Canadian Centre for Child Protection at 1-866-543-8477.
Brown, who runs a Facebook page called “Where in the world is Kaydance?” is offering a reward of $7,000 Euros (about $10,000 Canadian) for information.