New image of missing Nannup girl gives grandparents new hope


The grandparents of a missing WA girl say they are hopeful a newly released age-progressed image of her may give them answers as to her whereabouts.

The new age-enhanced image of Leela McDougall was one of six images of missing children released on Thursday as part of International Missing Children's Day.

Forensic artists from the United States National Center for Missing and Exploited Children helped create the age-progressed image of Leela, who would now be 15.

Her image, and that of five other missing children, were released at the International Missing Children's Day launch in Canberra.

Leela was five-and-a-half years-old when she and her mother Chantelle and two other men, Tony Popic and Simon Kadwell, vanished from their Nannup home.

They left behind wallets, credit cards and dirty plates on the table at their home in July 2007.

A note reportedly left at the home said they were moving to Brazil. They have never been seen or heard from since.

A coronial inquest into their disappearance will be held later this year.

Leela's grandparents Jim and Cathy McDougall told WAToday they were "amazed" by the image and hoped it may encourage people to come forward should they recognise it.

"When I saw the image I felt amazed to think that she has grown up that much," Ms McDougall said.

"It's so beautiful the photograph, but I just kept thinking of all the things I've missed as she has grown up.

"There is a really good family resemblance, she looks like my niece.

"When we get home I'm going to put it in a frame and put it on my wall so I can look at her everyday."

Ms McDougall described the past decade as very difficult not knowing what had happened to their daughter and grand-daughter.

"You just feel like there is something missing in your life," she said.

"You don't know where they are or if they are alright or if they need help. You just keep thinking all these different things have happened to them.

"We would just love to know if they were OK.

"My message to anyone who sees the picture and who recognises it, report it to Crime Stoppers and Missing Persons and maybe we will find something."

Mr McDougall added: "We just want to know if they are safe and well."

The other images released on Thursday were that of Serena and Thomas Speath, Isabella and Bronte Watter and Mathieu-Pierre Macintosh.

Mathieu-Pierre is believed to be in France or Belgium and is subject of an order issued by the French Courts to have him returned to Australia.

"Thinking of Mathieu gives me hope that I'll find him," his father Michael Macintosh said.

"The age progressed image goes a long way to getting an up-to-date image of him out there."

Australian Federal Police Assistant Commissioner Debbie Platz, National Manager Crime Operations, said: "We need all Australians to get behind this cause and spread the images of these missing children as far and as wide as possible."

To share the International Missing Children's Day images visit 'The National Missing Persons Coordination' Facebook page at

Anyone with information relating to any missing child is urged to contact their local police or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

This story New image of missing Nannup girl gives grandparents new hope first appeared on WA Today.