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Tuesday, 6 February, 2001, 17:26 GMT
Sarah murder suspect rearrested
Sarah Payne
Sarah's disappearance sparked a massive hunt
A 42-year-old mechanic from Littlehampton, West Sussex has been charged with the kidnap and murder of schoolgirl Sarah Payne.

Roy Whiting, was arrested by police at an address in Kent just after 0900GMT on Tuesday and was taken to Bognor Regis police station where he was interviewed and then charged.

Eight-year-old Sarah's body was found in a field near Pulborough, West Sussex, two weeks after she disappeared on 1 July.

She was last seen as she walked to her grandparents' home in Kingston Gorse, after leaving her brothers and sister playing in a field nearby.

A massive police operation, costing more than 1m, was launched.

Statement

Detective Inspector Martin Underhill announced the arrest on Tuesday afternoon.

"At 3.20pm this afternoon Roy William Whiting was charged with the murder of Sarah Payne.

"He was also additionally charged with the kidnap of Sarah.

"He will be appearing at Chichester magistrates' court at 10 o'clock tomorrow morning.

"Sara and Michael (Sarah's parents) have been informed that Whiting has been charged."

The BBC's Steve Kingston was in Bognor, West Sussex, where that announcement was made.

"Roy Whiting was questioned for almost four hours then charged with her kidnap and murder," he said.

The police say they received fresh information which was used for new lines of questioning with the suspect.

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 ON THIS STORY
The BBC's Steve Kingston
The timing of this is significant - a few weeks after the last appeal
Audio
Detective Inspector Martin Underhill's statement

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