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Family Of Backpacker Who Vanished After Beach Party Begins To Fear The Worst
Relatives of 21-year-old Amelia Bambridge, who's gone missing in Cambodia, are afraid she might have been kidnapped by human traffickers.
Authorities questioned six men in the case of a missing British backpacker who disappeared after a beach party in Cambodia – with her family fearing she's been abducted or worse.
"I think someone's taken her. I don't think she's had an accident. If she'd had an accident she would have been found," Amelia Bambridge's father Phil told Sky News.
Bambridge, 21, was last seen early Thursday morning around 3 a.m. at a party at Police Beach in Koh Rong, according to the Lucie Blackman Trust, an organization devoted to helping find missing British citizens overseas.
"She wanted to backpack for about three or four months, then come to Vietnam and be an ESL [English as a second language] teacher. She had plans to go to Australia and New Zealand. She just wanted to enjoy herself," her father told The Guardian.
The men questioned in Amelia's disappearance were released without charge, according to the BBC. They were questioned by police due to reports they had behaved badly toward visiting women at the island, according to local police.
Bambridge’s backpack, with her purse, phone and bank cards inside, were discovered at the beach later Thursday morning. Her disappearance was reported after she failed to check out of her hotel later that morning.
Amelia's family has traveled to Cambodia to assist in the search, according to BBC News. About 150 volunteers, including divers, navy personnel and visitors as well as Cambodian police officers are involved in searches.
But on Monday, Amelia's father indicated he was losing hope that they would find his daughter. Cambodian police are reportedly losing hope too–fearing that the young woman has drowned, according to BBC News.
“I’m not doing very well,” Amelia's father told The Guardian. “I just hope we can find her, but it seems like it’s going to be difficult. I’m not [optimistic], unless a miracle happens. I hope a miracle does happen, but I don’t think we’ll see her.”
“I spoke to her [before her trip] about safety, safety, safety, safety,” Phil Bambridge said. “And she was like, ‘Yeah’, she knew about all that. She was always reliable, switched on. But I think she still broke her own rules. She had her safety rules, and she let them slip, and she’s now paid the ultimate price.”
Other members of Amelia's family fear the worst. Her aunt Johanna O’Flaherty, who lives in the Las Vegas area, told local television station KSNV-TV that she fears her niece was abducted by a human trafficking ring
“I think, 'Oh my god, this is another Natalie Holloway,'” she said. “The same scenario: a young and attractive girl at the bar, drinking and partying, a beach area, missing.”
“I think there is a very high possibility that she is in captivity,” she said. “I believe that she was abducted, and there’s a good possibility that it is for human trafficking.”