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Osaka police: New development in case of girl who went missing in ’04

Yuri Yoshikawa went missing in the town of Kumatori on May 20, 2003
Yuri Yoshikawa went missing in the town of Kumatori on May 20, 2003 (NHK)

OSAKA (TR) – Investigative sources with the Osaka Prefectural Police have revealed a new development in the search for a 9-year-old girl who went missing 14 years ago as she commuted home from school in the town of Kumatori, reports NHK (Dec. 28).

The Izumisano Police Station believes Yuri Yoshikawa was possibly kidnapped at around 3 p.m. on May 20, 2003 on a street near her residence in Kumatori. There have been three eyewitness reports of a suspicious white Toyota Crown sedan stopped in the area around that time.

In the latest information, an eyewitness claims to have seen a girl seated in the vehicle with a man behind the wheel. Police suspect that girl is Yoshikawa.

The National Police Agency is offering a reward of 3 million yen for the provision of information regarding the disappearance of Yoshikawa.

The parents of Yoshikawa are hopeful for the return of their daughter. Earlier this year, both of her parents distributed tissue packs containing information about their daughter, a fourth-grader at Kita Elementary School at the time of her disappearance, to commuters using JR Kumatori Station.

“She is our only daughter,” said Nagaaki Yoshikawa, the girl’s 56-year-old father. “I absolutely want to bring her back.”