A 23-year-old man was arrested today on suspicion of wasting police time and perverting the course of justice after officers launched a frantic hunt for an Audi they were told had been stolen with a child in the backseat.
The white Audi A3 which was initially said to have had a child inside and was reported missing, was later found by police who said the youngster was located ‘elsewhere’ and was ‘safe and well’.
This evening, the Met Police confirmed a 23-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of wasting police time, perverting the course of justice and causing a public nuisance after reporting the theft of a car with a child inside from Beckton Triangle in Beckton, east London.
A tweet by the Metropolitan Police appealing for information was shared hundreds of times in little over an hour.
Officers then thanked social media users for spreading the word as they revealed the search was over.
A spokesman said: ‘The white Audi we appealed for has been found and the child located safe and well elsewhere.
‘We’re establishing the circumstances of the report.’
The force had earlier said on Twitter: ‘We are urgently trying to locate a white Audi A3 reg GK20 AFU that has been reported missing.
‘We believe there is a young child inside.
‘The car was last seen in Beckton Triangle, E6 #Newham at approx 12:18hrs today.
‘If seen please call 999.’