Has she been trafficked into the sex trade?

28-year-old Saoirse Smyth was last seen in Belfast on 11th April 2017 but was not reported missing until December 2017.

She is described as 4ft 11 inches tall, slim build, with blue eyes and very distinctive red hair.

It is believed that Saoirse returned to Omeath where she was living at the time but has yet to contact family or friends since. It seems that Saoirse was a family-orientated person so her lack of contact is a real cause for concern. Even on significant times such as her birthday and Christmas, she did not contact her family and that is a very significant concern.

She has not responded to any please on social media from her friends and family and so the PSNI (Police service of Northern Ireland) believe that she may have been murdered but, that said there is no sign of her body or possessions that may have been with her at the time.

I am somewhat angered and very concerned by the very obvious lack of coverage in the media and even sites such as YouTube when it comes to this disappearance.

There have been several searches undertaken but all to no avail thus far, and some members of her family believe that she is in fact still alive and maybe being held against her will by a criminal gang or sex traffickers. I understand that other members of the family believe that Saoirse is dead and police say that they believe she dies at a holiday home in Omeath, but the obvious question is “where is the body”? 

PSNI believe that she may have been murdered by a male connected with a cross-border drugs gang because she was in a relationship with a member of a rival gang.

I can fully appreciate that the family say they are far too many unanswered questions surrounding Saoirse’s disappearance and the police’s presumption that she was murdered.

In an interview with The Sunday World newspaper, Saoirse’s grandmother, Vera Smyth spoke of her dying wish to give the young woman she brought up since she was a child a Christian burial. I can only begin to imagine the heartbreak and trauma that this family is suffering.

Vera said ““At the start I had hope, I thought she would just turn up here someday but that will never happen. I have now come to terms that she is dead.

“Someone murdered my poor girl, I know that.all I can pray for now is to find her body and be able to let her rest in peace, give her a proper burial, the I can rest in peace too when the time comes,” Vera Smyth told Sunday World.

“At the start, I thought she might have gone on a holiday but the police checked all the airports and boats. Then I thought that she had been put on the game, pardon my French but now I know in my heart that she was murdered.

“I just want her body back. Someone knows something and I beg anyone who does to speak out, tell us what happened and where her body is. They can ease all this heartbreak by making a phone call anonymously, that’s all they would have to do,”

Having read what little information there is online I am not convinced this young woman is dead, it seems much more likely that she has been taken off somewhere if the connection to rival drugs gang is correct. It is my professional experience that county lines and cross-border drug cartels use and traffic their victims, they tend to only kill rival dealers that are costing them money by crossing their paths and poaching their punters.

I am in agreement with Saoirse’s cousin, Nicole that she is out there somewhere and cannot reach out for the help that she needs. 

It seems that Saoirse was involved with some pretty unsavoury characters who were quite dangerous, it could, of course, be the case that she crossed one of them and was murdered for a drugs debt or something, but I have a gut feeling that this may well not be the case. 

Let’s remember that county lines' drug operations are massive and are being broken down here on mainland Britain and Saoirse could well have been trafficked almost anywhere including onto the mainland.

Nicole Smyth issued a heartbreaking appeal to the Sunday world saying; “I’m not joking, we would be on our knees begging if we could. Please end our pain, you get used to it as the time passes but it never goes away but someone out can help, especially for my granny, she needs peace.”

As a cold case researcher, you would expect me to be kind of used to these cases but sadly I am not, this case has massively touched all of our hearts as a team and we just hope that this broken family can get the justice that they deserve.

I am doing my best to continue to bring you content whilst working on researching documentaries with the rest of the team and this is one of those cases that our team leader is hopeful of bringing to the screen in the coming months.

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