Jay Slater search plunged into confusion over Airbnb phone riddle

Casa Abuela Tina rental in the village of Masca
-Credit: (Image: Stan Kujawa)

The mystery surrounding the disappearance of Jay Slater has deepened with new information about his phone. Jay vanished on June 17 while holidaying in the remote Rural de Teno area of Tenerife for a three-day music festival.

The 19 year old apprentice bricklayer left his friends to stay at a quiet Airbnb with two other British partygoers and attempted to walk back to his accommodation - a 19 hour trek on foot - that morning.

Jay embarked on an arduous 11-hour journey on foot and called his close friend Lucy Mae Law informing her that his phone battery was running low, he was thirsty, and had injured his leg on a cactus. His phone's last known location was in the mountainous region near the village of Masca, where Spanish police concentrated their search before officially ending it on June 30.

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Despite the official search being called off, Jay's family and friends have continued to scour the island with the help of former British police detective Mark Williams-Thomas, 54, who has investigated numerous high-profile missing persons cases. The ex-Met Police officer shared an update on social media yesterday, revealing that he had spoken with Ayub Qassim, 31, one of the men who returned to the villa with Jay.

In his conversation with Mr Qassim, Mark claimed Jay had asked him for a phone charger and then took one from the other Brit's room while he was sleeping. However, in a strange turn of events, just hours later, Jay's phone was on one per cent battery as he attempted to walk back to his accommodation on the south of the island, reports The Mirror. It died at around 8.30am on Monday, June 17.

In a video shared on X, Mark explained: "On arrival at the rental, [Mr Qassim's] friend opened the door, went to the left and went straight to sleep. Jay walked in behind, followed by [Mr Qassim]. They went upstairs and Qassim told Jay, 'The sofa's for you there', handed him a towel, a blanket and told him to have a shower whenever he wanted."

The TV detective added: "Jay also asked for a cigarette and Ayub said I've got some Camel cigarettes and put one on the side. Jay then asked for a charger, then went into Qassim's friend's room, while he was sleeping and took the charger."

Mr Qassim then reportedly nodded off and was woken by the sound of the door buzzing. He was asked to move his car and spotted Jay chatting to a woman outside. He offered Jay a lift into town when he had woken up properly, but Jay said he needed "some scran" and could get the bus. Jay walked away and Mr Qassim went back to sleep.

Mr Qassim had booked the Airbnb, Casa Abuela Tina, nestled near the remote village of Masca, for a reasonable £40 a night under the alias Ayub Abdul. On June 17, Jay stayed at the quaint cottage. Qassim, along with an unidentified friend, known to some under the alias of 'Johnny Vegas', remained in touch with Spanish officials and even extended his stay by one day to assist with the probe into Jay's mysterious disappearance.

The day after Jay was reported missing, his mate Lucy recounted: "He rang me at about 8am saying his phone was on one percent. He said 'I don't know where I am, I need a drink and my phone is about to die'." Using clues from Jay's last Snapchat post, the concerned friend managed to track down the Airbnb on the day he vanished.

Upon reaching the property, she confronted the two men inside. She explained: "We managed to find the house. I knocked on the door and there were two people there." They informed her that Jay had stepped out for a smoke before re-entering the property and wanted to go home.

"They told me he'd spoken to the next-door neighbours and they'd told him there was a bus every 10 minutes back down to Los Cristianos," Lucy added.