Jay Slater's dad sends emotional message to online trolls as he visits search site

-Credit: (Image: Stan Kujawa)
-Credit: (Image: Stan Kujawa)

The search on foot has ended today, the chief of the Civil Guard's mountain rescue operation has said, after helicopters have spent hours circling the colossal ravines that are at the epicentre of the search of missing Jay Slater.

Warren Slater, 58, and his son Zak, 24, were seen today alongside emergency services and volunteers at the remote mountain spot outside the village of Masca where Jay's mobile phone last pinged.

Two police helicopters have spent more than three hours flying around the main search areas that are the focus for emergency workers, rescuers, and volunteers. Another search began today, after the Civil Guard put out a call to arms to redouble efforts to look for the missing 19-year-old.

The Civil Guard recalled all emergency workers, including mountain rescue and firefighters, to help with today’s search (June 29). And as the search runs into its 13th day, Spanish police urged any volunteers with mountain experience to come forward and help.

READ MORE: Major Jay Slater investigation update issued on mystery Airbnb pair last seen with missing teenager

Just half-a-dozen volunteers joined the efforts this morning, with around 30 members of official emergency service bodies heading out into treacherous conditions to search for the 19-year-old from Lancashire. The searchers have been amongst thick and sharp cacti, and dense vegetation.

But the Civil Guard was confident as it gave its first press conference of the search as the emergency workers and volunteers gathered for a briefing ahead of today’s searching. Cipriano Martin, chief of the mountain rescue team of the Guardia Civil, said the two British men who were with Jay Slater at a rural Airbnb rental the night before he went missing are of 'no relevance' to the police investigation.

A massive search underway today for missing Jay -Credit:Stan Kujawa
A massive search underway today for missing Jay -Credit:Stan Kujawa

Cipriano Martin, head of the Civil Guard's Greim mountain rescue unit said: "They have already spoken to the men and it didn’t have any point of relevance to the case."

Asked whether Jay's family will take part in today's search, he said: “All week they’ve been participating because we’ve seen them and they’ve seen us in several places. They’ve been actively participating.”

Later this afternoon, the chief was reluctant to give any more updates about how the search has been going. Mr Martin was reticent to share how today’s search has been going, he said: “We’re going to see if there is any more news in the course of the afternoon/evening.”

Speaking at the search site this afternoon, a visibly emotional Warren shared his frustration at online trolls wading in on the search for his youngest child. “It’s a bit disappointing that there are no British apart from Paul [Arnott] but I suppose to them he’s just a British lad who’s come out here and got drunk,” said Warren.

“I’m grateful to those who have come out here because you can see just how dangerous it is and what gets me is the trollers who are having a go at us for not searching. It’s not the local park, these are big mountains, the terrain is dangerous, put yourself in our position. Would you go out in these conditions?

“It’s tough, it’s hard, we are leaving it to the professionals and I’m grateful for those who have turned out today and I want to thank them for what they are doing.”

Warren added: “We just still can’t believe it; it’s been so tough on us, and I want people to think about us as parents and what we are going through. All those trollers having a go at us, they don’t know how we feel, why don’t they come up here and have a look and see for themselves how dangerous it is.

“I’ve come up here now myself because I wanted to have a look about with Zak and to thank those who are up here and have given their time. I just didn’t think this would go on for so long, I dropped his mum and brother off at the airport and thought they would be back in a few days. I just thought he’s gone out had a drink and ended up at some girl’s place as we all did when we were younger, he’s our youngest I just want him home.”