A 31-year-old man, was arrested in East London in connection with the abduction of three young children by their father.
City police said the total number of arrests in the case over the past five days was 13, and officers pursued Imran Safi, 26, and his children. Safi is believed to have snatched the young men – Bilal, six, Mohammed Ebrar, five and Mohammed Yaseen, three – from their foster caretaker at knifepoint last Thursday in Coulsdon.
The children and their father have not been seen since the incident. Four men between the ages of 21 and 41, arrested Friday morning on suspicion of involvement in the kidnapping, have been released on bail.
The suspect is believed to be known and they were all arrested at a location in Ilford, southeast London. In a statement, the Met said: “Officers arrested the 31-year-old at a residential address in Ilford on Saturday, August 29, on suspicion of conspiracy to kidnap a child. He is currently being held at a police station in the South From London.
Eight other people, relatives and friends of Safyi, were also arrested on suspicion of involvement in the kidnapping and released on bail the next day.
It is belived that children will be officially adopted into the new family, detectives believe to be the reason for the abduction.
The brothers were taken to the address bar in Croydon on the night of August 20 while their guard was inside. The caretaker said Safi threatened him with a knife before forcibly taking the children and taking them away.
It is unknown at this time whether Safa, Afghanistan’s Pakistani captives, has left the country, but detectives are working with national and international agencies to investigate any allegations. The notice was issued to all ports as soon as it was caught and more than 30 calls from the public have been received since Thursday afternoon.
Scotland Yard is also requesting information on the departure of a red Nissan Qashqai car, a PK13 WFO registration, last Thursday in the Croydon area.
Anyone with information about the vehicle, or who believe they have seen Safi with three children from August 20, should contact detectives immediately on 07942 599374.