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Grealis family feeling positive following Netherlands visit


RENEWED HOPE The family of Achill man JP Grealis, who went missing in Holland ten years ago, say they have renewed energy in their search following a recent visit.

Ciara Galvin

THE family of missing Achill man JP Grealis have gained ‘renewed energy’ from their latest visit to the Netherlands.
JP went missing in the Dutch town of Breda ten years ago, on October 23, 2008, while he was looking for work.
Following the tenth anniversary of their brother’s disappearance, the Grealis family from Tonragee travelled once again to Holland to meet with new volunteer organisations and a crime journalist to investigate the case once more.
Speaking to The Mayo News yesterday (Monday) from the Brabant area, JP’s sister Helen said the recent milestone tenth anniversary drove her and her sisters Claire, Caroline and Bernadette to launch a new investigation.
“We met with a crime journalist here in the Brabant area who is looking at investigating my brother’s case from start to finish again, to see if anything new pops up or if he can get any new information, and he is working with the police,” said Helen.
The Dutch police officially closed the case in 2012, and in 2014 the family lost an appeal against that decision. Now, the crime journalist is working along with police to get them to revisit other areas of the case.
“It was a positive outcome. We spent a number of hours with them this morning (Monday), going through the last-known locations and last steps of my brother. We did some video footage and also some victim appeals for information that they will publish on their national media,” said Helen, who added that it is good that people are taking an interest in the case again. “I feel like we have a renewed energy to go after it again,” she added.
The investigation is now in the hands of the crime journalist and voluntary organisations in the Netherlands, and the family will keep in frequent communication with them.
“We may need more trips but it’s left with [the crime journalist] now to do the investigating. We’ll be communicating via phone. He has a good base to work off, so depending on what he gets, or if he needs more information, we may need to be back and forth,” concluded Helen.