An investigation launched by the Daily Star Sunday Newspaper has revealed shocking and upsetting figures that up to as many as four children are abducted every week in the UK by strangers.
The investigation discovered that at least 500 incidents of Child Abduction have taken place in England and Wales Â in 2010 and 2011.
Out of those figures, 42 per cent of them involved either strangers trying to abduct or making an attempt to abduct children.
The Daily Star Sunday investigation figures into child abduction in the UK were obtained by contacting each and every police force in England and Wales to help establish where the abduction hotspots were.
Almost a quarter of child abduction cases involving strangers ocurred in the Metropolitan Police Force.
There were 46 reported cases of child abduction cases by other persons from Greater Manchester police.
West Midlands police reported 25 cases but stressed that none of these incidents had been successful stranger child abductions.
The investigation obtained one of the most complete figures amassed for child abduction in the UK of its kind, with only Cumbria police force refusing to co-operate claiming that by disclosing the information it would then breach data protection.
“These findings add further weight to the Government’s announcement that it will be developing a national strategy on missing people”, said Chief executive for the charity Missing People.
A Home Office spokesman added:
“We are determined to protect vulnerable children.”
All the figures given by police for child abductions in the UK for the investigation only included attempted abductions therefore a breakdown showing just how many children were being abducted was not possible.