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Former Lambeth Missing Persons Unit boss Mike Neville has explained his “personal theory” regarding Jay Slater as the search for the missing teen rumbles on.

Speaking on GB News, Neville criticised the Tenerife authorities after they called off the search last weekend, arguing the whole affair has been “badly handled”.

But in what GB News host Martin Daubney branded a “dramatic twist”, Slater’s family yesterday announced its latest desperate attempt to find him with an enormous search-and-rescue operation.

Reacting to the latest development, Neville said: “My personal theory is, he’s in that park somewhere. He’s taken some substances possibly and had some drink, he’s confused and exhausted.

“There’s all that background noise as well. When you know that somebody stayed with someone who is a convicted drug dealer, then you need to look into it.

“The police have seemingly been too quick to dismiss this and say things are conspiracy theories.

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“It was initially portrayed as Jay being a young lad on his first holiday but it turns out he’s been convicted of a violent assault.

“As well as a search of the park, the police should be looking at the background and asking is there anything else going on?

“They don’t seem to have done that. It’s been badly handled in that sense.”

Daubney’s co-host, Anne Diamond, suggested the police may have conducted checks into Slater’s private life but opted not to disclose their findings to the public.

“What strikes me is they’ve already said there is no criminal investigation”, Neville said in response.

“This is something they have actually declared. That’s what strikes me as odd. I agree with you that you would think there would be a parallel investigation.

“I don’t see why they would ever come out and actually say there’s not a parallel. Sometimes police do things in the background.”

Despite the search being called off by Spanish police on 30 June, Slater’s mother, Debbie Duncan, has vowed to remain on the island with her family until he is found.

The family is planning to use a significant portion of the £50,000 it raised through a GoFundMe crowdfunding campaign to hire specialist search teams and the Guardia Civil have given them permission to proceed.

The private search team is expected to cost tens of thousands of pounds and will have to liaise with the police to ensure “good management of information and resources”.

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