‘I’m very, very scared’: Family of Cleo Smith’s alleged abductor break silence

Dec 07, 2021
Cleo Smith alleged abductor faces court for second time. Source: Getty Images.

The family of Cleo Smith’s alleged abductor has broken their silence, as the accused faced court for a second time after spending a month behind bars in Casuarina Prison.

The Western Australian man was charged in relation to the alleged abduction of four-year-old Cleo Smith on November 4. The charges included one count of forcibly taking a child under 16.

He appeared in Carnarvon Magistrates Court via video link yesterday, November 6. No application for bail was made and the accused will be spending Christmas behind bars after he was remanded in custody to reappear in court on January 24.

A family member of the accused appeared in court for the hearing and told reporters they fear for his safety in prison.

“I’m very, very scared,” the family member said.

“We all know what Casuarina prison is (like).”

Cleo disappeared from the tent she was sleeping in with her parents at the Blowholes campsite in Macleod, north of Carnarvon, on October 16, police found the four-year-old alive in a locked house in Carnarvon at approximately 1am, November 3, 18 days after she went missing.

Deputy Commissioner Col Blanch confirmed in a statement that Cleo was found “alive and well” following her dramatic rescue.

“It’s my privilege to announce that in the early hours of this morning the Western Australia Police Force rescued Cleo Smith,” he said.

“This is the outcome we all hoped and prayed for.”

Blanch thanked Western Australian Police for their “incredible police work” during the search.

“I want to thank Cleo’s parents, the West Australian community and all of the volunteers,” he said.

“And of course, I want to thank my colleagues in the Western Australian Police Force.”

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