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Boy to stand trial for rape and murder of six-year-old Alesha MacPhail



A teenage boy will go on trial next year for the rape and murder of six-year-old Alesha MacPhail, who was killed on the Scottish island of Bute.

The 16-year-old suspect, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is accused of abducting Alesha from her grandmother’s house in the middle of the night.

She was reported missing in the early hours of 2 July and her body was found during an extensive search of woodland near her grandparents’ home.

Police Scotland launched a major investigation after Alesha’s body was discovered and arrested a 16-year-old male.

Alesha was reported missing on Monday morning
The six-year-old was reported missing while staying with her grandparents

Alesha was visiting her father Robert MacPhail and his family in Rothesay on Bute in the Firth of Clyde, west of Glasgow, when she died.

She was a few days into a three-week break.

The teenager denied the charges of rape and murder when he appeared at the High Court in Glasgow on Monday.

His trial is scheduled to start on 4 February and is expected to last two weeks.

Flowers are left outside the house that Alesha went missing from
Well-wishers laid flowers outside the house where Alesha went missing

It is understood that Alesha had been living in North Lanarkshire with her mother Genie Lochrane during term time.

At her funeral in July, her uncle Calum MacPhail said: “She had a great amount of love for absolutely everyone. She was the brightest thing.”

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