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'Israeli Madeleine McCann' was killed by grandfather, say police

HOMEPAGE NEWS REPORTS INDEX MISSING & MURDERED CHILDREN NEWS AUGUST 2008
Original Source: TELEGRAPH: WEDNESDAY 27 AUGUST 2008
Published: 11:42AM BST 27 Aug 2008
 
Police in Israel now believe a missing four-year-old French girl, previously dubbed "the Israeli Madeleine McCann", is dead
Rose's grandfather also became her stepfather Photo: Getty Images
Police claim Rose Ron's grandfather Roni Ron has confessed to accidentally killing the child and dumping her body in a river, but no corpse has been found and there is no forensic evidence proving she is dead.

However, the police are unsatisfied with his story and suspect that Rose was abused and later killed by her grandfather, Mr Ron, and mother, Marie Pisam.

 

The pair are believed to be lovers.

Question marks surrounding the girl's fate had led the Jerusalem Post to ask: "Is Rose Israel's Madeleine (McCann)?"

The story has gripped the Israeli nation after it emerged that Rose's grandfather also became her stepfather, falling in love with his son's bride and fathering two more daughters with her.

Ilan Ben-Shalon, head of the police team investigating Rose's disappearance from the Mediterranean coastal resort of Netanya, said the child's mother was arrested two weeks ago with her ex-husband's father, following a tip-off.

Rose's great-grandmother, Mr Ron's mother, had told police she had not seen the child for several months.

The couple are in police custody. Mr Ben-Shalom said: "According to the suspects' statements so far, there is a strong suspicion that Roni and Marie are involved in violent abuse and the murder of Rose."

He did not release their surnames but local media named the grandfather as Roni Ron, a 45-year-old Israeli, and the mother as Frenchwoman Marie Pisam, 23.

Mr Ron's lawyer, Revital Swid, said her client admitted hitting Rose in a burst of anger as she cried from the back seat of the car and that later, stricken by fear and remorse, he concealed her corpse.

Mr Ron said Ms Pisam was unaware of the killing. "He confessed to investigators and reconstructed the events of that tragic night when he gave the child a blow, a blow he did not expect to have such a result," Ms Swid told reporters.

"He was under pressure, panicked, was very worried about his partner's likely reaction, and as a result took action to conceal (the body)."

However, Israeli's national police commissioner claimed Mr Ron had given several conflicting statements.

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