Sussex Police have said they will “re-examine” the case of the schoolboy Vishal Mehrotra who was found dead months after his mysterious disappearance from London more than 40 years ago.
Vishal, aged 8 at the time, disappeared as he walked home from shops in Putney after watching the royal wedding of Charles and Diana on July 29, 1981.
His partial remains were discovered in an isolated farm near the village of Rogate in Sussex in February 1982 but his killers were never found despite investigators interviewing more than 14,000 people.
Senior police officers met Vishal’s father Vishambar at his home on Wednesday (10) and told him that detectives had been directed to “advance” the case and several lines of inquiry would be re-examined.
The assurance follows a BBC podcast which revealed new information on the case, including a potential link between the murder and the document titled ‘Vishal’ written by convicted child sex offender Nicholas Douglass.
Vishal’s remains were found buried in a bog at a depth of around two feet on a property where Douglass is known to have abused children.
Vishambar, who last month criticised the police for their failure to re-investigate the murder, expressed doubts about the extent of the new investigation.
“I am very pleased but I am also sceptical because I am not so sure how much and when they are going to actually investigate,” Vishambar told the BBC.
Earlier this year, a Channel 4 documentary series titled ‘In the Footsteps of Killers’ uncovered a diary, suggesting the notorious paedophilic gang leader and fairground worker Sidney Cooke was in the area where Vishal’s body was found.
Cooke, 95, convicted of several sex offences committed between 1972 and 1981, has been serving two life sentences. He and other members of his gang including Leslie Bailey were jailed for the manslaughter of Jason Swift, a 14-year-old boy.