A Sailor From The Missing Nuclear Submarine Was Interrogated By Police Moments Before He Disappeared Without A Trace

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A Sailor From The Missing Nuclear Submarine Was Interrogated By Police Moments Before He Disappeared Without A Trace

The Scottish Mail on Sunday has uncovered that a sailor from one of the UK’s highly classified nuclear submarines was questioned by police shortly before he vanished mysteriously.

Josh Gayton was last spotted on CCTV during the early hours of Tuesday after a night out, clad in just a T-shirt and trousers. However, it has emerged that police officers interacted with Mr. Gayton just after midnight regarding a minor offense.

His absence was reported later that day when he failed to report for duty at Faslane Naval Base. Hailing from Worcestershire, the 21-year-old is believed to be unfamiliar with the Helensburgh area in Dunbartonshire, where he was last sighted.

Police Scotland has confirmed that officers engaged with Mr. Gayton shortly before his last known appearance. A spokesperson stated, “At 12.05am on Tuesday, April 16, in West Clyde Street, Helensburgh, a 21-year-old man was issued with a fixed penalty notice in connection with a public urination offense.”

In the wake of his disappearance, his fellow servicemen initiated their search efforts, while his loved ones launched online appeals, disseminating descriptions and images of Mr. Gayton.

Expressing frustration, a serving military officer, requesting anonymity, criticized Police Scotland’s handling of the situation.

He remarked, “The Royal Navy Police frequently patrol Helensburgh, and Police Scotland should have notified them when they encountered Josh. They bear a responsibility for people’s well-being, and their motto is Keeping People Safe. Instead, his colleagues are questioning why they allowed him to wander off in the night, intoxicated, underdressed, and disoriented, despite being an active member of the Royal Navy.”

Mr. Gayton’s disappearance triggered extensive search efforts by police, the Royal Navy, and the Ministry of Defence. His last known sighting on CCTV showed him walking unaccompanied on East Clyde Street, near Lomond Street, away from Helensburgh town center towards Craigendoran, at 12.46am on Tuesday—approximately six miles from the base.

Investigations are ongoing, and CCTV reviews revealed a man resembling him conversing with a member of the public at 12.25am outside the Riva restaurant on West Clyde Street.

The disappearance of Mr. Gayton has undoubtedly rattled the Faslane military base where he was stationed, particularly due to his role in supporting the UK’s nuclear deterrent. The base houses Britain’s Vanguard-class submarines, armed with Trident nuclear missiles. At least one vessel from the base is deployed at all times to uphold a continuous at-sea deterrent.

In 2022, Secretary of State for Scotland Alister Jack emphasized the pivotal role of Trident and NATO in deterring potential threats, highlighting the indispensable nature of the personnel entrusted with crewing the submarines.

He remarked, “Nothing about submarines and submariners is routine,” emphasizing the resilience and excellence of the armed forces personnel involved.

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