London

Met warning after 'abduction attempts' in Croydon

Police are warning south London parents to be on guard after two young girls faced apparent abduction attempts.

The first, aged 11, was grabbed by a man of Asian appearance driving a white car on 10 May in Croydon but escaped.

Then, on 20 May, a 14-year-old girl wriggled free of the grasp of a man, again of Asian appearance and driving a white car.

Police have put extra patrols on in the area and are appealing for the public to remain vigilant.

The first incident happened in Kenley, Croydon.

The victim heard someone running up behind her and her arm was grabbed by a man.

She broke free and as she ran she saw him get into a grubby, dented white car with a woman driver wearing hooped earrings.

The man was in his early 30s with light skin colour, a shaved head and scruffy beard.

He wore a black zip-up track suit and a large square earring with a clear stone in it.

A red and yellow swirl tattoo was seen on his lower back.

The second incident happened near Woodside Green when the victim was asked directions by two men in a white car.

Later that day the same girl was grabbed by men in a white car but pulled her arm away and walked off.

One of the suspects was of Asian appearance, about 40, with dark skin, short dark hair and scars on his cheeks and neck.

He wore a black suit and dark blue shirt.

The other was Asian, in his 20s, with light skin, a brown shirt with brown stripes and washed out black jeans.

His wrist was scarred.

Parents reassured

The small, four-door car had a black scratch under the front headlight running down the side of the vehicle.

It was filled with tissues, bin-bags and coats.

Croydon borough commander, Ch Supt Adrian Roberts, said: "I want to reassure parents that our investigations remain vigorous and extra patrols remain in place across the borough.

"I would ask the public to report any suspicious activity by calling us and to remain vigilant.

"We take this type of incident very seriously."

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