THE HUNT is on to find a six-year-old girl who was in the backseat of her father’s car when a man sped off.
Beatrice Felicia was sitting in the car this evening when her father met up with a man interested in buying the vehicle.
The suspect jumped in the car when Beatrice’s dad was outside and sped off down Leyton High Road with the child in the back.
Beatrice, a Romanian girl with long black hair, has not been seen since the incident at 6.30pm.
Police are urgently appealing for information and are asking anyone who may have seen the car - a brown VW Passat with reg-number NG11 BMZ – or her to call 999 immediately.
Beatrice has blue eyes, wears her hair in a long plait and was wearing a pink flowery top and grey leggings.
The suspect is described as an Asian man, in his 30s, with short dark hair and a dark beard.
Police say he was wearing a dark hooded jacket with fur lining as sped off towards Chadwell Heath.
Peter Kirkham, a former Met Police detective, told the BBC: “Getting as much as you can in the early stages is absolutely crucial.
“They will be desperately looking for the vehicle as the primary line of enquiry and CCTV, and other means of trying to track the vehicle.
“Anyone listening to this in that vauge area of North East London please keep your eyes out - it may be driving past your house.”
He said there have been a number of cases like this over the years where a child has been in the backseat of a stolen car.
But the longer time goes by without news of where Beatrice is, the more concerning this case becomes.
He added: “The longer time goes by the further away it can be, and the search area expands as a couple of hours go by. If kept driving for two hours it could be an awful long way away.
“The child may have been removed from the car. Be on your lookout or a six-year-old girl, if you see her, dial 999, and keep an eye on her until the police arrive.”
He added: “When they find they have a child in the vehicle they may panic or the child will panic, and something will happen.
“Or, there’s more to this than meets the eye, the police will be looking at other potential avenues too.”