A Lithuanian man who was the subject of a murder inquiry nearly five years ago was found living in a woodland area near the town of Wisbech in eastern England, according to a police statement Monday.
Ricardas Puisys was reported missing after last being seen September 26, 2015. The then 35-year-old was working for a fruit and vegetable producer called Nightlayer Leek Company in the town of Chatteris, CNN reported. A murder investigation was launched shortly after Puisys repeatedly failed to show up to work.
Following our appeal two weeks ago we’ve received info of potential sightings of Ricardas Puisys in #Wisbech and #KingsLynn. Ricardas has been missing for the last four years and initially believed to have been murdered. Please continue to share our appeal https://t.co/eBhZK8Xok3 pic.twitter.com/4j56G15ev8
— Fenland Police (@FenCops) December 11, 2019
A Cambridgeshire Constabulary statement released Monday added that Puisys was found on July 1 but the information was not publicly released in order to “protect him and put safeguarding measures in place.”
“For almost five years Ricardas’ disappearance has been a complete mystery,” Detective Chief Inspector Rob Hall said. “Following a search of a wooded area in Harecroft Road, Ricardas was eventually found living in undergrowth, very well concealed after having deliberately hidden and having not spoken with anyone for some time.”
Puisys is currently being safeguarded by police, according to BBC News. The police statement added that Puisys had been in the company of a group of Lithuanian men at his workplace before disappearing. (RELATED: A Man Was Told That His Dad Had Abandoned Him. Then He Hired A Psychic Who Unearthed A Murder)
Police also said Puisys may have faced abuse by the agency through which he was employed, CNN reported. Initial concerns documented in the statement “suggested to police he was being exploited and had moved addresses within Wisbech.”
DCI Rob Hall from @CambsCops telling us more about the discovery of Ricardas Puisys in #Wisbech after 5 years. Police had started a murder investigation in 2015. He was found living in undergrowth. #HeartNews pic.twitter.com/yk7klrzQXJ
— Heart News East (@HeartNewsEast) August 4, 2020
“There were genuine concerns Ricardas came to harm that evening. He did not return to work on Monday, 28 September, 2015 as expected, but we now believe Ricardas made the decision to run away as he had been a victim of crime, having previously been subject to exploitation,” Hall said.
An investigation into his five-year long disappearance and potential exploitation has begun as police believe he was hiding to escape his abusers, BBC News reported.