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Nottingham Post
Nottingham Post
Laura Sharman & Oliver Pridmore

Nicola Bulley diver reportedly dropped from NCA expert database

The National Crime Agency has reportedly removed specialist diver Peter Faulding from its list of experts after his company failed to find Nicola Bulley. The 45-year-old mum was spotted 23 days after her disappearance by walkers, after having last been seen near the River Wyre.

Peter Faulding's Specialist Group International (SGI), a private group which has assisted in several high profile investigations, joined the search. Nicola was eventually found in reeds at the side of a stretch of river and Mr Faulding has since said his £55,000 sonar can only scan the water and cannot travel through reeds.

Law enforcement sources now say SGI has been suspended while a review is carried out, the Times reports. SGI was allegedly dropped from an official list of experts recommended to assist in investigations on the Expert Advisers database, the Mirror reports.

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A National Crime Agency spokesperson told the publication that it "does not employ, endorse or accredit experts" on its adviser database. A spokesperson continued: "The database is subject to continual review and its purpose is to maintain a list of expertise UK law enforcement can draw upon when required.

"We proactively seek feedback from customers regarding experts' performance and contribution. The monitoring of performance equally applies to individuals and organisations who become involved in investigations without NCA engagement."

Peter Faulding has not commented on the reports that he has been dropped from the NCA database, but he has previously said: "A riverbank and wade search would be the only way to search this area and we were not involved or tasked with that search. The difference between these two search areas has caused a lot of confusion and unfair criticism towards myself and my team at Specialist Group International (SGI)." The Mirror Online has contacted SGI for comment.


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