Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Update: Family of Missing 4th-Year Medical Student Return to Singapore

Missing persons are probably one of the most heart-breaking of situations to deal with. It is one thing if viable leads are developed which enable authorities and family to either find the missing person alive or not, but when the missing person disappears without a trace, and family never have closure, it becomes gut-wrenching for everyone...every day that the missing person is not found.

Unfortunately, the family of missing Singaporean 4th-year medical student Kouk Leong Jin, 28, returned to Singapore on October 16, with no more information than they had when they arrived in Athens shortly after he disappeared, looking for their missing son. The DUKE-NUS medical student had flown to Athens on September 26 to attend an obstetrics and gynaecological conference on September 28. It is also known that someone did an electronic check-in for the return flights to Singapore, but Kouk never boarded the outbound flight from the Greek capital.

COMMENT: I worked one case in Cyprus some years ago involving an American who disappeared during the Turkish invasion of 1974. I was then asked to pick up on a cold trail in 1996 and eventually found the remains of the person I had been searching for in 1998, using ground radar, after interviewing over 200 people.

Hence, it is possible to find a missing person, assuming they did not intentionally disappear, which could be an issue in this case. Strangely, Kouk's credit cards have not been used. From all indications there is no apparent history of depression, suicidal thoughts or his being distraught or unsettled with his family. One issue to be examined is what financial resources he had available to himself. Unfortunately, the Greek police have developed no leads. If he is alive, though, it could be months before any leads emerge on what happened to him.

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