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Blood not Joshlin’s: DNA test on clothes found in field not a match

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While the search for Joshlin Smith has extended beyond South Africa’s borders, the police have confirmed that the bloody clothing that was found in a field in Saldanha Bay did not bear the DNA of the missing six-year-old.

Joshlin Smith has been missing since February 19. Picture: Supplied

WHILE the search for Joshlin Smith has extended beyond South Africa’s borders, the police have confirmed that the bloody clothing that was found in a field in Saldanha Bay did not bear the DNA of the missing six-year-old.

Today marks 42 days since the little girl was reported missing.

Police Minister Bheki Cele said there are no positive leads to finding the girl even though four people are behind bars, including her own mother, Racquel “Kelly” Smith.

Weeks after her disappearance, the police found bloody clothes thought to be Joshlin’s, but Cele stated in a TV interview that the DNA samples tested negative.

“Unfortunately the DNA on the pieces of clothes that were found didn’t indicate that those clothes belong to Joshlin. When it came back from the laboratory it came back negative,” Cele said.

The police found bloody clothing in a field in Saldanha Bay. Picture: Screengrab from TikTok video

Cele added that the search for the Grade 1 learner at Diazville Primary School has been extended beyond South Africa’s borders as far as the United Kingdom.

“The police have been working with their sister organisation, we have expanded the net, I know that more than a week ago a ship was searched in London as there was information that she could have been in that one, it took about two and a half days to search the ship.

“She could not be found there and the net has extended beyond the borders of South Africa. The investigation is also continuing in Saldanha Bay.

Cele added: “I would like to thank the community of Saldanha Bay for standing united. When I visited the area, everyone agreed that the child must be found. Four suspects have been arrested but they have not given us where the child is.”

No leads: Police Minister Bheki Cele. File picture

On March 5, the police arrested Kelly Smith and her boyfriend Jacquen Appollis, as well as Steveno van Rhyn and Phumza Sigaqa, for human trafficking and kidnapping.

According to Kelly, she left her sick daughter in the care of Appollis on February 19 and when she returned home from work Joshlin was gone.

She went to report her missing the following day.

One of the accused allegedly told the police that Joshlin was sold for R20,000.

Sigaqa was released due to a lack of evidence, but a few days later Lourentia Lombaard was arrested.

Prosecutor Jacques van Zyl told the court that Lombaard had given the police a full confession, but didn’t give further details.

The four accused have abandoned their right to apply for bail and remain in custody and are due back in court on May 13.

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