Page last updated at 17:18 GMT, Tuesday, 30 March 2010 18:18 UK

Man faces court over kidnap and murder of Milly Dowler

Milly Dowler
Milly Dowler, 13, went missing on her way home from school

A former doorman is to appear in court on charges of kidnapping and murdering Milly Dowler in 2002.

The body of 13-year-old Milly was found on Yateley Heath in Hampshire, six months after she went missing in Walton-on-Thames.

She disappeared after calling her father to say she was on her way home.

Levi Bellfield, 41, has been summoned to appear at Staines Magistrates' Court on 13 April, where he will be formally charged.

'Painstaking work'

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is bringing the charges after receiving a large dossier of circumstantial evidence compiled by the police.

Levi Bellfield
Levi Bellfield faces three charges

Nigel Pilkington, from CPS South East, said: "After carefully reviewing all the evidence in this case, I have now reached the decision that there is sufficient evidence and that it is in the public interest to charge Levi Bellfield with three offences."

In a statement, Milly's parents Bob and Sally said: It's very hard to say how we feel after eight long and difficult years.

"We are extremely grateful to Det Supt Maria Woodall and her investigating team for their painstaking work and support to us over the years."

Nigel Pilkington of the CPS and DCI Maria Woodall announce Levi Bellfield is to stand trial

As well as the charges relating to Milly, who disappeared near a railway station on 21 March 2002, Mr Bellfield, of west London, is also accused of trying to kidnap Rachel Cowles, then aged 12, the previous day.

A UK-wide search was carried out to find Milly, and her remains were eventually found about 25 miles (40km) from where she was last seen. The teenager was identified by dental records.

Police have continued to search for a red Daewoo Nexia car caught on CCTV which they believe was used to transport Milly's body.



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SEE ALSO
Timeline: Milly Dowler
30 Mar 10 |  Surrey

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