Appeal launched to help find missing Finnish teacher

Riina Elisabeth Sj�gren. Picture: Police Scotland
Riina Elisabeth Sj�gren. Picture: Police Scotland

The distraught family of a Finnish teacher who went missing in Edinburgh have launched a desperate appeal to help find her.

Riina Elisabeth Sjögren, 38, vanished from a tram stop in York Place on Tuesday 9 January at 10:20pm.

Her behaviour in the days leading up to her disappearance grew more erratic, including failing to get on a booked flight from Edinburgh Airport.

Riina’s sister, Kirsi Maria Sjögren, 30, said: “Everybody is so afraid. We have no idea what happened to Riina. The police came to my mother’s house last week. They said that ­Riina’s luggage was found at the airport, but that they don’t know where she is.

“We didn’t know that she was going to Edinburgh. She just left and didn’t tell anyone where she was going. It’s completely out of character.

“Riina has never done anything like this. We have no idea why she would go to ­Edinburgh. The police have been very helpful, but I don’t think they know what has ­happened to her.

“If somebody has seen Riina or heard from her, please call the police. Riina, if you see this, please call mum. She is sick with worry.”

Police said they established that Riina visited Edinburgh Castle on the evening of 8 January and that she left her bag, purse and coat at the airport.

They said officers were now “growing increasingly concerned” for her welfare and continued to ask anyone with information to come forward so they could find her.

Riina’s close friend, Marjo Moilanen, 38, said: “Everybody is so worried. We found out on Wednesday last week that she is missing.

“It’s a mystery. We don’t know anything other than what the police have said. We don’t know what she was doing in Edinburgh. I hope that she is OK and that we will find her.”

Riina had bought a plane ticket to Amsterdam before abandoning her suitcase and disappearing from Edinburgh Airport about 8:50pm on 
9 January.

She was then seen taking a tram to the centre of Edinburgh where she was captured on CCTV getting off at York Place.

Her family said Riina, from Helsinki, had not informed them of her trip. She has no known links to Edinburgh.

Riina is understood to have worked as a teacher in her native Finland and also worked on a hotel reception desk in London around ten years ago.

She is described as white, 5ft 3ins tall, of medium build with long dark brown hair and wears glasses.

She was last seen wearing dark trousers and a blue cardigan, with a red or pink top underneath, and a black and white scarf.

Officers are checking CCTV across the city centre and appealing for the public’s help.

Chief Inspector Alan Carson said: “It has now been a week since Riina was last seen and I am eager to hear from anyone who has seen her since this time.”

Anyone who may have seen Riina can contact police via 101.