Ben Needham’s mum still waiting for DNA test from items found in 2016

Ben Needham’s mother is still waiting for DNA results 18 months after bloodstains were found on a toy car and sandal found at the scene where her boy vanished almost 27 years ago

  • Blood found on items by South Yorkshire police during 2016 search for the child
  • Official Facebook page for missing toddler said family still didn’t know results 
  • Ben Needham disappeared mysteriously in 1991 on the Greek island of Kos

Ben Needham (pictured) went missing from his grandparents’ farmhouse on Kos in 1991

The mother of missing toddler Ben Needham is still waiting for DNA test results on two items found where the child vanished, 18 months after they were dug up.

Kerry Needham, 44, revealed last year that blood had been found on both a toy car and a sandal by British police during a fresh search for the missing youngster in 2016.

South Yorkshire police investigators flew to the Greek island of Kos to try find out what happened to Ben when he disappeared almost 27 years ago.

But officers formally ended their search on after failing to find the toddler’s remains. 

The DNA tests are being done by an independent group who are doing it for free, rather than by police, according to the Sun Online.

A new message on the official Help Find Ben Needham Facebook page read: ‘We are still waiting for an update re the items found on the latest dig.

Forensic scientists found blood on a toy car and a sandal which they believe belonged to Ben in 2016 but the results are yet to come back

Police believe Ben was killed in accident close to the farmhouse where he was last seen, then buried nearby. Mother Kerry Needham (right) believes the body was dug up and moved a second time before officers returned to search the site in 2016

‘As the items have been underground so long it could take sometime to extract DNA if there is any there.

‘We ask you to please keep sharing Ben’s story. Somebody out there knows exactly what happened to Ben.’  

Police believe Ben was crushed to death by digger driver Konstantinos ‘Dino’ Barkasin in a tragic accident close to the farmhouse where he was last seen in 1991 and where the sandal was found in 2012.

Investigators took around 60 samples from the farmhouse where Ben disappeared (pictured) and a second site where the toy car was uncovered

Investigators think the toddler’s body was buried half-a-mile away, where the toy car was discovered during fresh searches by British police last year.

Ms Needham now believes her son’s body was dug up and moved a second time before the British police search in a bid to cover-up his death.

Officers formally ended their search on the Greek island in October last year, after failing to find the toddler’s remains.


Here is a timeline of events charting the disappearance of Sheffield toddler Ben Needham on the Greek island of Kos 25 years ago.

July 24 1991: Ben Needham vanishes while playing near the grounds of a farmhouse in the Iraklis region of Kos, which his family are renovating. His mother, Kerry Needham, and grandparents raise the alarm with local police and conduct a full search of the area.

July 26 1991: Eyewitness reports claim a boy matching Ben’s description was found at the local airport on the day he disappeared. That boy has never been traced.

September 1991: The Needham family return to England due to illness but vow to continue the search.

June 2003: The Metropolitan Police issue an image of what Ben might look like at age 12 – 14 years old.

2004: An anonymous businessman offers a reward of £500,000 for information leading to Ben’s safe return.

October 2010: Another public appeal is made by Ben’s mother in the run-up to what would be his 21st birthday.

May 2011: The BBC airs a programme called Missing 2011, which includes a piece on Ben’s story and the campaign to find him.

September 2011: Greek police on Kos officially re-open the case and grant the family a face-to-face meeting with the island’s prosecutor.

October 2012: South Yorkshire Police in Kos begin digging up mounds around the property where Ben went missing to look for his remains. A sandal matching the ones he was wearing on the day he vanished is found.

December 2013: Ben’s mother accuses then-Prime Minister David Cameron of not giving her case the same backing as he gave the parents of Madeline McCann. It comes as a dossier is produced containing reports from eight witnesses, none of who know each other, who all saw a boy possibly matching Ben’s description with the same Greek family.

December 2014: Lawyers representing Ben’s family say they may take legal action to try to force the Government to make a decision about funding a new police investigation.

January 2015: The Home Office agrees to fund a team of British detectives to help search for the toddler.

March/April 2015: Three generations of Ben Needham’s family travel to Greece to follow up a ‘strong’ lead that a man living there believes he may be the missing Brit due to having no photographs of himself under the age of two and no knowledge of where he was born. The man is later ruled out.

May 2015: Ben’s family make a fresh appeal on Greek television for information regarding the disappearance.

May 2016: The Sun newspaper publishes a report that members of the police operation go on an ‘eight-hour booze-up’ in Kos during the latest stage of the investigation.

September 2016: Ben’s family are told to ‘prepare for the worst’ by detectives leading the investigation, amid the belief the 21-month-old was crushed to death by a digger – the driver of which died in 2015. 

It comes as police arrive in Kos to begin excavation work in the belief the boy’s remains may be buried near the farmhouse. The toy car is discovered around 750m from where he was last seen.

July 2017: Chemical traces found on the sandal and car indicate the presence of a decomposing human body. Samples are sent for DNA analysis to see if the blood can be matched to Ben.

April 2018: Official Help Find Ben Needham Facebook page reveals DNA results are yet to be fed back to the family.

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