New DNA link to Highland Show rape

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By ALEXANDER LAWRIE

THE HUNT for a vicious rapist is closing in after police recovered a full DNA profile of the man they are searching for.

A teenage girl was savagely raped in a portable toilet at the Royal Highland Show in Edinburgh on June 27.

The 17-year-old girl, from the Grampian region, was attacked while the popular Young Farmers’ Ball event was being staged just yards away at the Ingliston event.

At the time, police issued an appeal for a white “stocky” man with an Irish accent and a “distinctive small nose” to come forward.

It is the second rape inside three years at the popular, annual show.

The new DNA evidence is now set to be run through police databases in Britain and Ireland as detectives step up the hunt for the monster.

Possible Irish connection

DI Duncan Morrison, who is leading the inquiry, said the victim described her attacker as having an Irish voice, but added she could have mistaken it for a northern, north-west or Hebridean accent.

He said: “We have contacted our counterparts in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland to see if we can identify attendees at the Royal Highland Show. We are getting a good response from both.

“The Young Farmers’ Association are also assisting us.

“We are now aware that there were several groups of Irish people attending the Show and the Farmers’ Ball and we would urge individuals from these groups to contact us.

“The inquiry is in its infancy with a huge amount of information gathered already. We are currently sifting through the information we have gathered and prioritizing various lines of enquiry.”

The victim had just finished using one of the portable loos when she was pushed back inside and attacked at around 12.30am.

Despite her screams for help, the loud music drowned out her cries as revellers queued only feet away.

Suspect description

The suspect is described as white, mid-to-late 20s, stocky build, and around 5ft 9in tall. He was unshaven with short brown hair, described as being in a gelled, messy style and had a distinctive small nose.

It is thought he was at the ball with friends including one who wore a recognizable Australian bush-style hat, blue jeans and red top with white lettering.

The mother of the young victim said: “My daughter is trying to put this awful experience behind her, and as a family we are trying to live life as normal in what is a very abnormal situation.

“We are all devastated, but we are strong, and we are pulling together as a family to support each other and get through this.”

In June 2006, a 17-year-old girl was raped in the north car park of the Ingliston Showground as she made her way back to a nearby caravan. The teenager was returning from the Young Farmers’ Ball in the early hours of the Saturday morning when she was knocked to the ground and raped.

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