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Last Updated: Monday, 23 October 2006, 16:31 GMT 17:31 UK
Two arrested in abduction manhunt
White van thought to have been used in the abduction

Police hunting for a convicted rapist believed to have abducted a girl from a busy street in Wrexham, have arrested a man and a woman in north-west England.

They were detained by officers looking for Alan Grant, also known as Alan Weston, from Stockport, who they suspect carried out the random kidnap.

The 15-year-old is said to have had a "horrendous" ordeal before being found in the Bangor area early on Saturday.

The arrested man has since been charged with perverting the course of justice.

He was detained in Lancashire on Saturday morning and appeared at Wrexham Magistrates' Court on Monday.

The woman is in custody on suspicion of assisting an offender in the Manchester area.

North Wales Police said they were still searching for Mr Grant.

Police sign and tape at the side of the road
The scene of Friday's abduction was taped off by police

The hunt for him was launched after the teenager was spotted being forced into a white van near Summerhill Road, on the edge of Wrexham, around 1600 BST on Friday.

She was reported missing three hours later by her family after she failed to return home.

Officers confirmed that the girl was found some 15 hours later, at about 0700 BST on Saturday, 70 miles (113km) away in Bangor.

Police have not released any details about how she was located.

An hour after she was found, a white LDV van, registration R474 GNB, with an orange beacon on the roof and a small grey panel near the rear door, was discovered at a farm three miles (4.8km) outside Bangor.

Police confirmed on Monday that Mr Grant had stayed at a caravan park in the Bethesda area before the abduction on Friday.

Driven erratically

They want to hear from anyone who saw the van being driven erratically on Friday afternoon. It is thought the vehicle forced a white Vauxhall Astra off the road in the Brymbo area.

North Wales Police assistant chief constable Iain Shannon said the search for the van driver had been extended beyond north-west Wales to other force areas.

"We were looking in the Bangor area for him, whilst we continue to work in north Wales on this issue, we don't believe that he is Bangor area any more, although we cannot rule that out," he said.

"We're working very closely with colleagues in other forces to find him."

Alan Grant, also known as Alan Weston
Detectives have now widened their search for Alan Grant

Police have also appealed for Mr Grant to contact them himself by either phoning 999 or going to his nearest police station.

The public are being asked to keep an eye out for him and to contact the police immediately if he is spotted, but under no circumstances to approach him.

Det Supt Peter Chalinor, who is heading the North Wales Police inquiry, said: "We need to speak to Mr Grant as soon as possible.

"We do not - I repeat do not - want the public to approach him, but to call 999. We are trying to protect the public."


VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
"If people see him then they should dial 999"


"He's a very dangerous man and should not be approached"



SEE ALSO
Search widens after girl's kidnap
22 Oct 06 |  North East Wales
Hunt for driver as girl is found
21 Oct 06 |  North East Wales

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