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Suspect arrested after alleged abduction and sexual assault of young girl

Detectives have arrested a man on suspicion of the abduction of a seven-year-old girl who was sexually assaulted in a van in Greater Manchester Police (Greater Manchester Police/PA)
Detectives have arrested a man on suspicion of the abduction of a seven-year-old girl who was sexually assaulted in a van in Greater Manchester Police (Greater Manchester Police/PA)

Detectives have arrested a man on suspicion of the abduction of a seven-year-old girl who was allegedly sexually assaulted in a van in the Manchester area.

Officers believe the girl was abducted by a man on Warne Avenue, Droylsden at around 4pm on Wednesday and taken to a wooded area, then the van where she was attacked, before she was returned to the woods and found her own way to a nearby park.

On Wednesday evening a 35-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of abduction and sexual assault, and is in custody for questioning, but Greater Manchester Police said detectives are keeping an open mind, and a search is continuing for a second man said to have been acting suspiciously in the area at the time of the incident.

Girl abducted
Police have made one arrest but still want to speak to a second man (pictured) after a seven-year-old girl was abducted in Droylsden, Manchester (GMP/PA)

Police earlier released two images of the second man and the force said: “We wish to speak to him urgently in relation to this incident and we have a large number of officers remaining in the Droylsden, Ashton-under-Lyne, and wider areas to find him.”

Detectives, who said enquiries are ongoing amid a large police presence in the area, said they are continuing to appeal for information about the identity and whereabouts of this second man.

Anyone who sees him has been told to call 999.

The first image was captured moments after the reported abduction, while the second is from around 30 minutes later, police said.

In the latter, the man appears to be wearing his jacket around his waist in Gainsborough Road as he heads towards The Snipe.