Judge lifts reporting restrictions in order to find girls who vanished while in family court proceedings

Two girls who went missing from their home in London while at the centre of family court proceedings could be with their mother in France or Madagascar, social services bosses say.

A judge overseeing private proceedings centred on Maya Bentchakal, 13, and 11-year-old Fitia Razakarisoa (pictured) raised concern about their disappearance in March 2020.

Mrs Justice Judd had relaxed reporting restrictions in the hope that publicity would help find the youngsters.

The judge, who is based in the Family Division of the High Court in London, has been told that the girls have not been found.

She says she is gravely concerned and fears they could be at risk of “significant harm” – and has given the council responsible for their welfare permission to make a fresh appeal for help finding them.

A spokesman for Hammersmith and Fulham Council says it is likely that the girls are abroad with their mother, Annick Razakarisoa.

The spokesman indicated that the Metropolitan Police, the Home Office and Interpol were involved in efforts to trace the girls.

“Prior to their disappearance, the family had been living in Hammersmith, west London,” said the spokesman.

“It is considered likely that the children and the mother have left the jurisdiction, possibly to France or Madagascar, and may be using different names.”

He urged anyone with information to contact police.

Council staff said the girls have relatives in the UK, France, Madagascar and Algeria.

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