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Last Updated: Saturday, 20 November, 2004, 14:12 GMT
Mystery deepens over missing Earl
The 10th Earl of Shaftesbury
The Earl has not contacted family or friends since 5 November
Mystery surrounds the missing 10th Earl of Shaftesbury after it emerged he spent a night in a hotel the night after he was last seen in France.

The 66-year-old, whose full name is Anthony Ashley-Cooper, was not thought to have been seen since 5 November and was due back in the UK on 10 November.

He had been staying in the Antibes area of France on holiday.

But a hotel receptionist has said there is a record of him staying at the Noga Hilton in Cannes on 6 November.

She said British police contacted the hotel to ask for a copy of the bill.

Nobody at the hotel had any recollection however of the Earl.

The Earl, who has been married three times and has two sons, has homes in England in Hove and in the City of London.

Girlfriend

French Police said he arrived in Nice, on France's Mediterranean coast, by plane on 3 November.

He is known to have contacted family and friends on 4 and 5 November but has not been in touch since.

Police in Nice said the Earl has a girlfriend in the nearby town of Grasse.

We are all deeply worried and want him back safe and sound
Lady Frances Ashley-Cooper

Local newspaper Cannes Matin Nice Matin reported on Saturday that police have not had any response to its missing persons story in Thursday's issue.

According to the paper, the earl's legal team are increasingly worried about their client's disappearance.

A spokesman said the earl had been calling his lawyer regularly.

"This is not usual and something has surely happened to him," said a spokesman.

The earl's sister, Lady Frances Ashley-Cooper, who has a home at Tavel near Avignon, notified French police about her brother's disappearance.

She said it was completely out of character for him not to be in contact with family.

"I would urge anyone with information to get in touch," she said.

No contact

"We are all deeply worried and want him back safe and sound."

Sussex Police said they had been in regular contact with the Earl's eldest son, also called Anthony, who is at the family seat in Wimborne, Dorset.

They said the Earl has a mobile phone but his family have been unable to get through.

The Earl is described as white, with a pale but possibly tanned complexion.

He is 6ft 1in tall and thin, with thinning grey hair and blue eyes, and sometimes wears large heavy-framed red and pink glasses.

Police said he normally wears casual clothing and a large watch.

He inherited his title as the 10th Earl of Shaftesbury from his grandfather at the age of 22.




SEE ALSO:
Hunt for earl missing in France
19 Nov 04 |  England


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