Missing aristocrat sleeping rough in freezing temperatures with newborn baby

A missing aristocrat who lived off-grid with her newborn baby and her partner slept rough in sub-zero temperatures, police said.

Constance Marten, 35, and her convicted sex offender boyfriend, Mark Gordon, 48, were last seen on January 7 in east London after buying a tent and bedding.

Detectives fear for their baby’s safety in freezing temperatures and having received no medical attention since she was born in early January.

On Tuesday, police said Mr Gordon went to Argos on Whitechapel Road, east London, at 6.19pm on Saturday January 7 to buy camping equipment, including a two-person blue tent .

The family then walked through the area for more than three hours, trying to flag down three black taxis, all of which refused to take them on as passengers.

They were last seen walking along Brick Lane towards Bethnal Green Road at 10:01 p.m. that evening.

Detective Superintendent Lewis Basford, who is leading the investigation, said: ‘We are extremely concerned that a newborn baby – less than a week old at the time on January 7 – was exposed to sub-zero temperatures if Mark and Constance have been camping somewhere as our evidence suggests.

“No child, especially a tiny newborn, should be forced to endure such dangerous, life-threatening conditions.

“That’s why it’s absolutely vital that anyone with information about her whereabouts gets in touch with us urgently – whether it’s with a recent sighting or an older one. Every piece of information is crucial to us finding the baby and make sure he’s okay.

“My officers will continue to work tirelessly behind the scenes to piece together the family’s movements and current whereabouts. They may be trying to blend in with homeless communities here in London or further afield, or camping in more rural or wooded areas.

“They could be absolutely anywhere in the country. Please keep your eyes open, especially when walking through wastelands or beauty spots, or when walking the dog, and report any information to us, no matter how insignificant you think it may be.

Ms Marten comes from a wealthy aristocratic family with royal ties and was a promising drama student until she met Mr Gordon in 2016.

Since then, the couple has led an isolated life, cut off from family and friends.

Starting around September last year, they started living in a series of AirBnBs across the country with short rentals and raised a significant amount of money to enable them to live off the grid and avoid the attention of the authorities.

Police began investigating their disappearance when officers were called to a car fire on the hard shoulder of the M61 near Farnworth, Bolton, Greater Manchester on January 5.

It appeared the couple, who saw most of their belongings destroyed in the fire, drove away from the crashed car before taking a taxi first to Liverpool and then from there to Harwich.

They then traveled by taxi again to East Ham station on January 7 and stayed there between around 10.30am and 12.30pm, before later taking another taxi to Whitechapel Road at 6.14pm, where they were dropped off with an orange plastic bag and a pram.

Each time they have been seen on CCTV their faces are covered and the baby is hidden, although taxi drivers used by the couple in the first days after their disappearance heard noises coming from a baby.

Mr Gordon served 20 years in prison in the United States for rape and assault for attacking a woman in her twenties when he was 14.

Anyone with information can call the police on 020 7175 0785 or, to remain anonymous, contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555111 or online.

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