Ani Ashekian - Have you seen this woman? (Missing person)

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  1. #111

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    May 2009
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    Are you related to this person? How did you know about her and her family about her missing action dated Nov. 8, 2008? Just curious and I might be able to tell you some made up stories here in the net...

    I hope she is still somewhere out there.... and May God watched over her.

    cheers,
    Jacky


  2. #112

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    May 2006
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    Pampanga, Philippines
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    Quote Originally Posted by jackyine:
    Are you related to this person? How did you know about her and her family about her missing action dated Nov. 8, 2008? Just curious and I might be able to tell you some made up stories here in the net...

    I hope she is still somewhere out there.... and May God watched over her.

    cheers,
    Jacky
    Which "you" are you referring to in the above post?

  3. #113

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    May 2005
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    Just got a red blob for #108 which simply says "rubbish". Care to elaborate Mr Comment Maker?


  4. #114

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    (For the record that wasn't me even though it was me you were disagreeing with - I only red blob for stuff that is factually wrong, not for valid differences of opinion)


  5. #115

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    薄扶林
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  6. #116

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    May 2008
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    1,715

    the options
    her visa to stay legally expired 09 Feb 09
    - she left on a sailing boat as a crew member
    - she fell down a hillside whilst hiking spaced out (another tourist disappeared walking on Lantao a few years back)
    - she has been addicted to drugs and forced to be a sex slave -unlikely - she looks Indian and may not be popular locally for that profession
    - she has been murdered -in the safest city in the world for tourists
    - we know she is not in a drugs rehab program, not working for an aid organisation and has not touched her bank accounts
    - she has a sugar daddy -unlikely as she knows she is staying illegally and no Supplementary credit card was issued locally in her name
    -her IMEI from her phone and Blackberry have not surfaced on another unit


  7. #117

    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    4,026

    Mark MacKinnon Nov. 9, 2009

    Hong Kong — From Tuesday's Globe and Mail Published on Monday, Nov. 09, 2009 9:38PM EST Last updated on Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2009 6:49AM EST

    In the closed-circuit video, Ani Ashekian looks unhurried as she withdraws money from a bank machine on Hong Kong Island shortly after midnight. There's a man withdrawing money at the machine beside her, but otherwise she's alone. She returns a few minutes later to make another withdrawal, taking out about $470 between the two visits.

    That CCTV footage of Ms. Ashekian using the bank machine in the Causeway Bay metro station early last Nov. 11 is the last time anyone saw the 31-year-old native of Windsor, Ont. About the same time, she sent a text message to her niece in Canada wishing her a happy birthday. Then, nothing.

    For a full year now, there have been no phone calls, no e-mails, no more bank withdrawals – not a trace. Hong Kong immigration officials say Ms. Ashekian never formally left the tiny territory. Even her bags haven't been found.

    All of this has turned Ms. Ashekian into an unfortunate celebrity in Hong Kong. Her disappearance has shocked the city of seven million, challenging its reputation as one of the safest big cities on the planet.

    It has also created a cottage industry of people – most of whom never met Ms. Ashekian – offering sometimes unsolicited advice. Private investigators, volunteers, psychics and a crime novelist who sees a bizarre parallel between Ms. Ashekian's case and his book have all contributed theories.

    That's in addition to the 12 officers Hong Kong Island's crime unit has reportedly assigned to the case, down from 150 officers at the peak of the search last winter. A Facebook group dedicated to the case has attracted more than 16,000 members worldwide.

    While the professionals have avoided speculating about what might have happened to Ms. Ashekian, myriad theories have been floated. The South China Morning Post has reported that she could have left Hong Kong on a small boat, since she didn't leave through the airport or any of its formal border crossings with China, “fallen in with the wrong crowd” or suffered a hiking accident. Psychics have claimed to have seen Ms. Ashekian in locations as diverse as teaching an English class and floating in water.

    Two people have come forward to say they may have seen Ms. Ashekian shortly after the CCTV video was made, but neither was positive that it was her they saw. A reward of nearly $30,000 hasn't led to any solid leads, either.

    Ms. Ashekian was wearing a grey sweatshirt, black shorts and a backpack in the CCTV video, her dark hair tucked up in a ponytail. She arrived in Hong Kong on Nov. 9 last year after spending just over a week in Beijing and central China. She told friends and family that she wanted to continue on to India, where she planned to go on a yoga retreat, and she was booked on a flight from New Delhi to Toronto on Dec. 15.

    Kinzie, a Canadian woman living in Hong Kong who is one of several volunteers who have devoted substantial time to the search for Ms. Ashekian, said the case has captured imaginations for the simple reason that it's so unusual. “This just doesn't happen here. Tourists don't just disappear in Hong Kong. Anyone who's lived here for any length of time is shocked,” said Kinzie, who uses only one name.

    Michael Connelly, whose bestselling novel Nine Dragons is about a father's search for a daughter gone missing in Hong Kong, feels a particularly awkward connection to the case. The missing woman in his book is last seen at Chungking Mansions, a budget hostel where Ms. Ashekian was spotted shortly before she made her bank withdrawals.

    Mr. Connelly visited the Chungking Mansions as part of his research, arriving just two days after Ms. Ashekian was spotted in the same place. In a blog he recently wrote for CNN about the experience, he called the connection between his book – which recently hit No. 3 on the New York Times bestsellers list – and Ms. Ashekian's real-life disappearance “eerie.”

    “Ani has vanished without anything to go on. And that's where this gets to me. In crime fiction, there is always something to go on,” he wrote. “But in real life it doesn't always happen that way... . Sometimes there is no direction and no answers and families and other loved ones are left with an unabated dread that hollows out their lives.”

    The Hong Kong police have upgraded the case from a missing-person file to a criminal investigation. Even so, one scenario friends and family say they aren't willing to contemplate is that Ms. Ashekian is dead. There were just 36 murders in Hong Kong last year – roughly half the number committed in Toronto – and missing-persons cases are so rare that the police set up a hotline specifically for Ms. Ashekian's case.

    “I don't think she's dead. I don't have an answer for why. I just don't,” said Kinzie.

    Ms. Ashekian's family feels the same way. Her sister, Sossy, told the South China Morning Post that she believes Ms. Ashekian will eventually come home safe. “I won't let that hope go,” she said.


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