Remains found in East Lothian identified as missing mum Louise Tiffney

7 April 2017, 17:26

Louise Tiffney Missing Edinburgh

Remains discovered near a stately home have been identified as those of a mother who disappeared 15 years ago.

Louise Tiffney, 43, was last seen leaving her home in Dean Path, Edinburgh, on May 27 2002.

Human remains were found near the entrance of Gosford House, a stately home in Longniddry, East Lothian, at around 6.30pm on Sunday and they have now been identified following dental analysis.

Ms Tiffney's family have been told the news.

Her son Sean Flynn, then 21, was cleared of her murder at the High Court in Perth in March 2005. The case against him was found not proven.

Police said her death remains a murder investigation and detectives will continue to liaise with the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service.

Detective Chief Inspector Keith Hardie said: "Now that we have identified these remains, our thoughts are once again with Louise's family, who have had to wait 15 years for this news.

"We will continue to provide them with all the necessary support and assistance they may require at this very difficult time.

"Our investigation into Louise's death and the discovery of her remains is continuing and we will keep the family and the Crown Office fully updated with the progress of these inquiries.''

The remains were found by a cyclist off the A198 road.

Police and scientific experts had been working at the scene since the discovery, and the remains were fully recovered by Friday.

The A198 reopened on Friday afternoon and police said the cordon had been removed and ``all items of evidential value to this investigation have been recovered''.

Speaking to reporters in Edinburgh, Mr Hardie said: "After 15 years I think it's more potentially good news for them (Louise's family) than bad news, and this may well bring the whole thing to a conclusion for them.

"I think they'd personally given up hope of finding Louise alive.''

He confirmed the area in which her remains were discovered had not been searched in the original inquiry.

"The surrounding area was of interest during the original inquiry, but where she was found was never searched before.

"We look to maximise every possible potential evidential opportunity around that recovery.

"`It remains a live murder investigation so we treat it as we would any other murder investigation.''

Asked if police had made contact with Mr Flynn, Mr Hardie said: "We have no reason to speak to Sean Flynn at this time, and he's not of any interest to us at this point in the inquiry.''

Chief Inspector Matt Paden, the local area commander for East Lothian, urged mourners placing flowers at the scene to leave them at a tree at the site.

He said: "We recognise that members of the community may wish to pay their respects to Louise and so we have identified an appropriate tree near to the area where the remains were recovered where people can come and lay flowers.

"The tree is easily accessible and can be viewed from the road and we would urge the public to leave any memorial items here, rather than on the roadway, where they could cause an obstruction.''