Aussie toddler found alive after being taken

Image copyright Ardyne Aridwan Image caption The man wanted in relation to the baby’s disappearance, Tony LaMonica Sorry, this Twitter post is currently unavailable. Australian police have found a four-year-old girl who had been…

Aussie toddler found alive after being taken

Image copyright Ardyne Aridwan Image caption The man wanted in relation to the baby’s disappearance, Tony LaMonica

Sorry, this Twitter post is currently unavailable.

Australian police have found a four-year-old girl who had been missing for a week.

She had been taken by a man while her mother was shopping in Sydney last Thursday. She was found in the driveway of a home in the city’s west, some 400 miles (650km) away.

Ardyne Aridwan was found with Tony LaMonica, 40, who is wanted in relation to the abduction.

Mr LaMonica is an Indigenous man from the Bourke community in Bourke, New South Wales.

Police and community members joined together to say a prayer for Ardyne and her mother.

People had been praying for her safe return Image: AP

The police said the girl was found in “good condition”, and was being looked after at a medical facility after being checked over by police.

According to local media, the girl’s mother broke down in tears after discovering Ardyne had been found.

‘Not a case of abduction’

Image copyright Australian Federal Police Image caption Police say the man who abducted the girl wasn’t armed

The head of Sydney’s Metropolitan Region, Acting Superintendent Stuart Bateson, said people should be reassured.

“We have recovered this young girl who is in good health. We don’t believe there is any danger to her,” he said.

Acting Superintendent Bateson also said it would be “very disappointing” if anyone did think there was a case of abduction.

“There was no-one around the area with any weapons or other coercive items. The family gave [the girl] to a man in order to return her to the location where she was taken,” he said.

Image copyright NSW Police Image caption Ardyne Aridwan with her mother in February 2018 Image: Supplied

“Therefore we have no concern for the safety of her mother. Tony LaMonica was not armed, he is at liberty to leave the property now.”

The AFP identified Mr LaMonica as a suspect in connection with the matter. A photo of him had been circulated.

Ardyne was taken in front of her mother by a man who appeared to be the child’s father. The father had made a video to the media appealing for help to find the child.

Witnesses say the man was wearing a black hoodie and gloves and they reported seeing him drive a white Toyota Corolla hatchback.

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