Top cop reveals challenges in Toyah murder case
THE state's top cop has acknowledged the challenges facing investigators in the Toyah Cordingley's murder probe with a key "person of interest" overseas.
Commissioner Ian Stewart said he fears the case will not be solved before he steps down in July, but remained "100 per cent optimistic" her killer will eventually be caught.
Today marks six months since the beloved 24-year-old Cairns pharmacy assistant was killed walking her dog on Wangetti Beach, north of Cairns.
Innisfail-based Indian nurse Rajwinder Singh has previously been flagged in media reports as a person of interest and is believed to have left Australia the day after Ms Cordingley's death.
Despite previous denials by police that the Australian Federal Police were involved, Mr Stewart confirmed they were working with them on the "intense investigation".
"When we have people ... who leave the state and in this case, potentially even leave the country, obviously it involves the Australian Federal Police and the countries where these people go to," he said.
"What I would say is that (Mr Singh) is a person of interest and obviously at an appropriate time we would hope to at least speak to that person and have conversations with him about this incident.
"But there is a process, it is quite an involved process when international law comes into it.
"We are very, very optimistic that we will be able to resolve this investigation over time, but people need to understand that it is a complicating factor when you have a person of interest who's not in the country."
He described police efforts to solve the case as "resolute" during the protracted investigation.
"We are 100 per cent optimistic that we can resolve this matter and bring someone to justice. That's the nature of our investigation and we won't rest until it occurs," he said.
"I'll watch with interest as the investigation proceeds and continues probably long after I'm gone."
He said the impact on the Far North community had been significant, praising efforts to rally behind Ms Cordingley's family through efforts like the stickers, and again urging anyone who was still withholding information to come forward.
"This is a tragedy on so many levels and my family goes out to the family and friends of Toyah," he said.
"It's a life sentence for them. We will never see her ever again and that's a tragedy.
"She was a young, vibrant person who was obviously well respected and liked in her community and I can only imagine the devastation that her passing has caused."
Most recently $4000 was raised at last weekend's Ellis Beach Ol'Skool Motorcycle Show to go towards a permanent monument at Wangetti Beach.
Douglas Shire councillor Michael Kerr, who is president the Paws and Claws animal refuge where Ms Cordingley used to work, said Ms Cordingley remained in the community's thoughts.
"It's great to see they still haven't forgotten her and still want justice for her," he said.