UK & World News
Megan: Teacher's Parents Make Emotional Appeal
Jeremy Forrest's father has urged him to get in touch and return home with schoolgirl Megan Stammers.
Jim Forrest made the appeal during a press conference at Sussex Police headquarters after a European warrant was issued for his 30-year-old son's arrest.
"Hi Megan, hi Jeremy, I hope this message reaches you and you're both okay. There are a lot of people back home who are desperate to hear from you," he said.
"All I'm asking is for one of you to send an email to let us know you're both safe. Please, please get in contact."
Mr Forrest, from Petts Wood, south east London, appeared alongside his tearful wife Julie to make the appeal a week after the pair boarded a ferry to France.
Sussex Police, who are leading the inquiry, still have no confirmed sightings of them.
The officer in charge, Chief Inspector Jason Tingley, said: "We are working closely with an enquiry team in Paris.
"Efforts abroad have been specifically focussed on information gathering. We are in a position to act swiftly to any information concerning their whereabouts.
"Locating the pair to ensure their safe return remains our top priority. This has probably not gone the way that Megan or Jeremy expected.
"Jeremy will be aware that he has questions to answer, and making contact with us is the best way he can do this.
"As part of the process of working with the French authorities, we have secured an international letter of request and a European Arrest Warrant.
"These orders, which have been obtained with the help of the Crown Prosecution Service, enable us to work with the European authorities, and are in relation to an offence of child abduction. This means taking Megan without the consent of her parents.
"The full details of this warrant have been circulated to every EU country. When the pair are found in an EU country, Jeremy can be arrested and Megan will be taken into protection."
Chief Inspector Tingley said an officer from the Sussex force had gone to Paris to work with French police searching for the pair.
He added their tickets to France were bought in advance and that they believed Megan, 15, went willingly with Mr Forrest and was not coerced.
But he refused to comment on whether Mr Forrest was being investigated before she and Mr Forrest set off to France.
"That is part of the investigation which I'm not willing to speak about," he said. "There was clearly a line of inquiry in regards to that and we'll be following that through."
Megan's step-father has made a fresh appeal for police and the public abroad not to give up trying to find her and Mr Forrest, who taught maths at Bishop Bell C of E School in Eastbourne, East Sussex.
Mr Stammers tweeted: "Please continue your efforts, if I could thank you all individually I would, your help is invaluable I implore you to RT #findmeganstammers."
The case is set to feature on the BBC's Crimewatch TV programme tonight.
Meanwhile, girl group The Saturdays have appealed for Megan to come home.
Writing on Twitter, the band's Frankie Sandford said: "Megan, on behalf of myself Mollie, Vanessa, Una and Roch, please come home or call your mum. Everyone is so worried about you! Lots of love x."
The Sun newspaper has produced missing posters in English and French to help the search for the teenager.
Megan is 5ft 6ins, slim, with long, straight, dark brown hair and blue eyes, and was last seen wearing a white vest top and silver chain.
Mr Forrest is 6ft, slim, with fuzzy facial hair and mousy brown hair. He wears square glasses, tends to dress casually and has a black star tattoo on his upper left arm.
Anyone with information is asked to call Sussex Police on 101, quoting Operation Oakwood.
A dedicated telephone number and text number which can be used from abroad have also been set up. They are 00 44 1273 475432 or text +447786 208090.
what do you think?
french law much more sensible in this more mature world , best wishes to both of you .
"a more mature world"? i don't think so
He was in a position of trust, she is underage, no matter how close she is to 16 he's breaking the law.
what have these two master criminals done exactly to have all the stops pulled out . Even if they are forced back here and they have had sexual relations at the age of 15 they still need the girl to bring charges against him and I don't think that's going to happen . People automatically think he will be done for statuary rape this is not the case
Absolutely right Paul. Two consenting adults decide to go away together and all hell breaks loose. I can understand the parents worry but worse things happen at weekends in most of our big cities.She has a schoolgirl crush and in a few months it will blow over and she will wonder what she ever saw in him. Pity the plods don't put as much effort into sorting real crime
But I am sure there is legal issues involved when teachers do such things with pupils. You would hope there would be stringent lines not to cross on his contract.
where do you get consenting adults from. for gods sake its a child not an adult.so you would be happy if it was your daughter would you?
She might legally be a child and no I wouldn't be happy if she was my daughter but I'm not getting the impression she is being FORCED. They grow up far too quickly these days and she knows exactly what she is doing!
Para999 Please see post from Mike Booth which explains my consenting adults comment perfectly.
so an arrest warrant has been issued for him.....good he overstepped his postition of trust.lets hope this has a happy ending.i.e he gets arrested and she returns to her parents who must be frantic.
I don't get it. At 17:15 my comment has got 5 thumbs down, which must mean, either you are being beligerant or you think she has been forced, yet in all the reports it would appear she is a willing party and all the twentysomethings I have spoken to say that at 15 they and their friends knew exactly what was going on! So what's your problem?
......WHY NOT USE THE TIME AND ENERGY GETTING HOOK OF TO HIS NEW VACATION.......
I have changed my opinion and now believe the police should calm it down.
its not going.to.last.is it. she.l.get homesick,miss her friends, family. he.s ruined his career and he should brng.her back if he has anything about him.
questions have to be asked as to why they left, could there have been real issues at home?
oh here we go, blame others
Mainly because he was a teacher in a relationship with a minor, I would have thought!
No wonder they ran away.... it was a bright move to tell him.... "Tomorrow we are going to do something about this relationship" They couldn't have been given a greater invitation to do a runner!! Why not just give them the Ferry Tickets as well? DOH!!!
You can rely on the French when you need help - so, no changes there then.
I agree that so far there is no evidence of sexual misconduct here in UK and in France it isnot illegal anyway. Unless Megan gives evidence to the contrary the charge will be one of abduction as she is under 16. Its the parents I feel for most. They must be going crazy.
The over the top reaction of the media and police has only served to make it harder for the pair to return, left to their own devices they would proberly have been back by now tail betwen their legs.
This is so sad for her mum and dad,I know them both ,Megan is a Beautiful child,her mum and dad must be going out of there heads with worry..I just want Megan to phone Home then all this can be sorted out....X
You saw the photos of them getting on ferry, so what is there to worry about? She went willingly and is living her dream for now until the brown stuff hits the fan and then she will be back home and her parents giving her grief, probably why she left in the first place.
these two are causing so much grief. shame on them. his parents on tele, they devastated.
why are people on their side. theyve acted deplorably. no condideration for families. his poor mother devastated on television. what future does he have now after running away with a silly infatuated schoolgirl. she.l still have a career, his is in tatters
This guy has overstepped the mark, and the girl should phone home to do a bit of explaining, that all goes without saying. But with all the hooha it makes you wonder if theres something we don't know. Like others have said i'm sure a different approach from the Police and the media might have seen more information about them by now.
Would have nice to see this much effort go in to finding the people who burgled my house...
Lorgar, I'm really sorry to hear that. X
Oh it's fine it was a while ago just twice in 1 year in different houses! Never did find them... just wonder if the same effort was applied to these 'normal' crimes then perhaps twice in a year wouldn't happen!
I don't understand why some people think there is nothing wrong here... You have a 15 year old girl who is not legally an adult and is still in school who is in a relationship with her 30 year old teacher (who is in a position if trust) and they've both run away to another country without telling anyone. Anyone see anything wrong?
I agree with you. Doubt very much if he'd run off If he wasn't about to be suspended.
Reading the commments I think people are more concerned about the way the Authorities have handled this. They have just made matters a lot worse and they have been pushed into a corner. This should have been delt with quickly and nippped in the bud before it reached crisis point.
Hi Michael, incase he flips? !
Most people agree it is wrong just that they question the handling of it. It's hardly the work of Moriarty is it?
A European Arrest Warrant has been issued ... for what? The man's not been convicted of an offence and is only wanted for questioning, if even that. The girl has gone willingly with him, her age is the age ofd consent in Europe so what wrong has been done? Ok, wait until they get sick of each other and return and then dig around for charges, etc but right now it is a waste of our money and resources!
Phoenixflight 7:12 PM on 27/9/2012 In case you hadn't noticed this man was in a position of trust. Even if she did go willingly the fact remains that he has, at the very least, in the eyes of UK law: 1. Abducted an underage girl 2. and taken her without her parents permission
young Girls age12-15 getting groomed ,raped and the Police and social service call this "a lifestyle choice,they even call them prostitutes keep in mind the age 12-15! how can the system justify this twisted Attitude