About Missing.Ws

Why this website was started

When I (Aquinas Duffy) first started this website in May 2000, except for the Garda SiochanaWebsite, there was no other Irish website offering people the facility to post messages about relatives who are missing. The Garda Siochana now have an excellent website with a section on missing persons. This website has been setup to help find my cousin (Aengus Shanahan), and also to provide the facility for other Irish people to place their information there also. In addition to the web address www.missing.ws it can also be accessed with addresses www.missing.ie, missingirishpeople.com and missinginireland.com

National Missing Persons Helpline

There was in Ireland, a National Missing Persons Helpline which was run by the Victim Support Organisation for two and half years. Our thanks to all who campaigned and made this possible. Sadly it ceased on March 31st 2005 due to funding being withdrawn by the Dept of Justice. It is good to report however that in April 2009, Missing in Ireland Support Services (a new organsiation set up to support the families of the missing) succeeded in re-establishing the National Missing Persons Helpline through grant aid and charitable donations. The helpline number which is a local call from anywhere in the Republic of Ireland is 1890-442 552. Their website, www.missingpersons.ie, also carries appeals for people missing from or in Ireland and whose cases have been reported to the Gardai.

In the event of a loved one being missing in the U.K., there is the Missing People Organisation (formerly National Missing Persons Helpline UK). They operate a service whereby those who are missing can call them and they will pass on information to the family. They also have a website. They are a charitable organization and depend on donations. Their phone number from Ireland is 0044 -20-8392 4545 and the free phone number from Ireland is 00 800 7000 7001 or free phone from UK is 0500 700 700.

Missing Persons Association

In 2002, following the campaigning for a state aided helpline, we formed the missing persons association. To learn more about its work see the Missing Persons Association Page on this website.

What you Can Do?

Please spend some time reviewing the Missing Persons Page and photos and perhaps you could be the person who will help locate a missing person. There are a number of reasons why a person would go missing, sometimes known only to him or her. One phone call from them would be enough to put their families’ minds at ease. Where a person has been abducted and taken against their will, there are always people who have information which can lead to the recovery of a body or to information leading the authorities to the place of their captivity. Any information that you can give can help.

Please also link your site to this site at WWW.MISSING.WS or WWW.MISSING.IE and tell people about missing.ws. You can also download a banner to use on your site. Other redirect domain names for the site are missingirishpeople.com and missinginireland.com.

Please also print off the missing posters on some of the pages and display them in your work place or home (it is an offense in some areas to place a poster in a public place so do not break local litter laws).

Remember also the anniveraries of the missing.

Facts and Figures

It is important to note that any person over 18 years of age is entitled in law to go missing of their own free will. That is the reason also why most missing persons’ websites will not accept a submission of a missing person’s details unless the case has been reported to a law enforcement agency (Police). Indeed, hard as it may be to imagine, some missing persons, may not want to be found. But families who have a son or daughter missing just want to know that their loved ones are ok. Knowing this alone would be a source of great help.

Every year, there are nearly 8000 people reported missing to the Gardai. The majority of these cases are resolved. For the 100+ cases that are not resolved , their families must live with the uncertainty. Where a person over 18 has made obvious plans to leave, are not suffering from any mental or physical disability and are not in any apparent risk, then there is no guarantee that their case will be accepted by the Gardai as a missing persons report.

A distinction was made up to Autumn 2003 between “acceptable” and “unacceptable” cases. The terms “acceptable” and “unacceptable” were used to distinguish betwen two categories of missing persons. The term “acceptable” referred to a) persons under 18 years, b) aged persons, c) physically or mentally disabled persons, or d) persons whose disappearance takes place in circumstances which give rise to fears for the person’s physical or moral safety. After 2003, these classifications changed to Categories A, B, and C.

“Category A” (High Risk) covers the reports which require immediate action on the assumption that the missing person is at serious risk, such as child abduction or possible suicide threats.”

“Category B” (Medium Risk) refers to persons who may have disappeared of their own volition and are asumed not to be at any immediate risk such as persons who have a reason to leave or have left a note stating that they do not intend to return.

“Category C” (Low Risk) includes reports where there is no apparant threat of danger to the missing person or the public such as a person over 18 who has decided to start a new life.

The statistics from the Garda Annual Reports are below:





















  Reported Missing    






Year A Untraced B Untraced C Untraced Total Untraced
2004 2612 44 1531 22 917 17 5060 83
2005 3277 37 1559 21 1161 17 5997 75
2006 3830 50 1611 14 1370 18 6811 82
2007 4514 51 1758 17 1720 30 7992 98
2008 4408 39 1782 11 1790 20 7980 70
2009 4776 65 1286 12 1687 14 7749 91
2010 6059 38 869 9 1411 22 8339 69
2011 6556 24 770 5 1185 9 8511 38
2012 6914 32 704 7 1167 12 8815 51
2013 5980 10 694 6 1079 12 7753 28


(For the Garda Annual reports See Garda Annual Report ).

To Those Who are Missing

The word “missing” in no way describes the sense of helplessness, frustration, anger, and despair that goes through one’s mind. Always, there is the desire to know where is he or she now and what happened to him or her. If one is a person of faith, then it is a real challenge to one’s faith. It makes one realise that we depend on each other and that’s why we need your help and ask you to keep your eyes open and on the look out for those who are missing. If you are aperson who is missing, please do phone home or contact this webmaster. It is enough to know that you are alive and your privacy will be respected. (See “Another page addressed to those who are missing”).

Getting Details Posted on this Site

If you have a loved one, who is missing from or in Ireland and whose disappearance has been reported to the Gardai, PSNI, or other Police Authority, and that you would like included on this website, I ask that you send whatever information and photos (in .jpg format) that you have toinfo@missing.ws . You can use the send report form (but PLEASE make sure that you give a valid email address). Please also give details of the police agency that you have reported the case to. Together we can highlight the plight of families who have someone missing and involve the public in being on the alert. It is perhaps Ireland’s greatest secret, that there are so many who have disappeared and whose cases remain unresolved.

The Lost Contacts section of the website also has many messages from people looking for lost Irish family contacts. You might be able to help there.


There is only one person (Aquinas Duffy) looking after this website in a voluntary capacity, so please be patient as regards a reply.

See also some helpful tips sent by the relative of a missing person and also a poem and prayerfor the Missing.

Thank You

Thank you to all who have helped to promote this site and thank you for taking the time to visit the website. See the Appreciation Page.

Go now and view the Missing Persons and Lost Contact Pages.