Fresh search as a result of new information in case of missing Co Tyrone man

CCTC still issued by the PSNI dated 25/01/2007 of Gerard Conway at a bank in Cookstown a few weeks before his disappearance. He has been missing for 10 years and was last seen in February 2007 in the Cookstown area. Photo: PSNI/PA Wire
CCTC still issued by the PSNI dated 25/01/2007 of Gerard Conway at a bank in Cookstown a few weeks before his disappearance. He has been missing for 10 years and was last seen in February 2007 in the Cookstown area. Photo: PSNI/PA Wire

Detectives from Serious Crime Branch investigating the disappearance of Gerard Conway in 2007 today began a search at an address in Ardboe, Cookstown.

The search at Battery Road has been undertaken as a result of new information being provided to the investigation team.

The officer in charge of the investigation, Detective Chief Inspector Gareth Talbot, said: “As part of the search operation we have deployed specialist resources. These include police search teams, victim recovery dogs and a ground penetrating radar device. These will assist in determining whether a sub-surface examination is required. Other equipment and experts are available, if required.

“Gerard’s family are being kept fully informed about our enquiries. The search may not yield any results but we feel it is important to act on this new information.”

Gerard, 32, was last seen in the Cookstown area late January / early February 2007. He was reported missing a short time later, however despite extensive enquiries by police over a number of years, there are no clues as to his whereabouts. He is 6 feet tall and of medium build. He had short, dark brown hair and blue eyes and has a scar running through his right eyebrow and another above his right eye.

Detective Chief Inspector Talbot, added: “Gerard’s disappearance continues to cause heartache and uncertainty for his family and friends who are heartbroken at not knowing what has happened to him. The passage of time has not eased this pain and I would appeal for anyone with information to get in touch with the police.

“After he was reported missing on 13 February 2007, police made initial checks in and around Cookstown and extended these to the Republic of Ireland and to England. We have CCTV footage of Gerard at a bank in Cookstown on January 25 and there were sightings by people who knew him in late January and early February.

“In the immediate aftermath of Gerard’s disappearance, there were unconfirmed sightings in the Magherafelt, Toome and Ballymena areas. Widespread search activity of the countryside around Cookstown, using dogs and aircraft, was unsuccessful. Because of the family’s connections with the Republic, we have worked with An Garda Siochana to extend the appeal there but, sadly, to no avail.

“After ten years we still have no definite leads as to what has become of Gerard and we continue to appeal for information. His family have made their own substantial efforts to locate Gerard and they deserve to know what has happened to him.

“Anyone with information, no matter how small, is asked to contact the police by calling 101. Alternatively, people can provide information anonymously to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”