Body pulled from River Thames is believed to be missing 19-year-old university student SAMARIA AYANLE, who has been missing for three weeks

Thursday, March 14, 2024
 – A body found in the River Thames three weeks ago is believed to be missing student Samaria Ayanle, who has been missing for three weeks.

The Met Police said that the teen was first reported missing by SOAS University of London, where she was in her first year studying Japanese and the History of Art, on March 8.

An investigation found she was last seen at her university accommodation near Marble Arch in the early hours of February 22, three weeks ago.

Police were called by a member of the public to reports of a body near Putney Pier at 8.19am on the same day. But no personal property was found and a fingerprint test could not confirm her identity.

An appeal for information was launched on Tuesday but officers have now linked the case with a body found last month.

The body was recovered with no personal property on it and fingerprint tests were "negative", police said.

A Met spokesperson added: "Police checked recent missing persons' reports but the body did not match the description of any other people reported missing around that time.

"The body was sent to the coroner to conduct further checks. Meanwhile, details were uploaded onto the UK Missing Person database in the hope the person might be identified.

"After Samaria was reported missing officers linked their enquiries to the 22 February discovery on Wednesday 13 March. They have viewed body-worn video from then and believe the person found is Samaria."

The body has not been formally identified.

Detectives are appealing for anyone with information about her disappearance to get in touch.

Her former University said: 'We are deeply saddened to hear that police have discovered a body which is believed to be that of Samaria Ayanle, who was a first-year student at SOAS University of London, studying for a BA in Japanese and the History of Art.

'Our thoughts are with her family, loved ones and friends at this difficult time.

'We know that this news will be felt by many and we will be doing everything we can do to support friends, family and the wider student and staff community.

'We urge members of the SOAS community who have been affected by the news to reach out if you need support.'

The apparent discovery of Ms Ayanle's body last month came after police recovered the bodies of two men in the River Thames on 10 February while searching for alkali attack suspect Abdul Ezedi.

His body was later found on 19 February.

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