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Last Updated: Thursday, 2 June, 2005, 11:00 GMT 12:00 UK
Missing boys stuck in broken lift
Two boys have been found stuck in a broken down shopping centre lift after sparking an overnight police search.

The 13-year-old friends had been to see a film at Lakeside in Thurrock, Essex, and were due to meet their parents on Monday evening after it finished.

When they did not turn up by 2200 BST police were called and a search was started in the surrounding area.

A signal from one of the boy's mobiles was traced but they could not be found. A cleaner discovered them the next day.

A police spokeswoman said trains were stopped and sidings searched.

Wandered into store

Metropolitan Police officers were dispatched to Upminster and Hornchurch, Essex, where the boys live, and an Essex police helicopter was used.

The cleaner found them in a broken-down lift at the House of Fraser shop, the spokeswoman said.

She said: "It is thought the boys became disorientated and wandered into the House of Fraser store where they became stuck in the lift just before closing time.

"A mobile phone signal was traced but police could not check inside every shop as many were closed.

"It is an unusual case, but we are delighted they were found safe and sound."

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