Actor joins appeal for safe return of missing teenager

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The Independent Online

The actor Jonathan Pryce joined an appeal for the safe return of the missing teenager Amanda Dowler yesterday, on the evening she was due to see him in a West End musical.

Amanda's parents had planned to take her to see Pryce in My Fair Lady before she vanished 12 days ago as she walked home from Walton-on-Thames train station in Surrey.

Police, who added another 20 officers to the search at the weekend, believe 13-year-old Amanda, known as Milly, went off with somebody she knew and confirmed yesterday they were investigating whether she had made contact with men through internet chatrooms.

One potential lead is an entry in Amanda's name on the FriendsReunited website for people wanting to contact old school friends. She describes herself as a "metler", meaning someone into heavy metal, and says she has "really stayed the same".

Pryce, who plays Professor Higgins in My Fair Lady, made his appeal for her safe return from the Theatre Royal in Drury Lane, where the Dowler family would have watched the musical last night. "From when I first heard she had gone missing I felt a strong and strange affinity to the situation," he said. "I'm a father, my daughter is 12, she's a little younger than Milly and when I saw her photograph it just made me think of my daughter."

Pryce said he could easily imagine the anguish her parents must feel but also the "sense of joy and forgiveness" they would have if and when she came home safely. We had a minute's silence for the Queen Mother on Saturday and if Milly was here there would be more than a minute's rejoicing."

Officers from Surrey Police are particularly looking for any of her personal property. A spokeswoman said detectives were following a number of leads from details obtained from Amanda's computer.

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