A FORMER private detective believes he may have seen missing York chef Claudia Lawrence in Amsterdam.

He contacted the findclaudia.co.uk website last week to say he had seen someone bearing a striking resemblance to her on July 2.

The information has been passed to North Yorkshire Police, so they can liaise with their Dutch counterparts.

Claudia has been missing since March 2009, when she failed to turn up for work at the University of York, where she was a chef.

She was 35 when she went missing.

Martin Dales, friend and spokesman of Claudia's father Peter Lawrence, said: “We are very grateful to all members of the public who remain vigilant in supporting both the police and the family’s attempts to find out what has happened to Claudia.

"We don’t know if this is a sighting of Claudia or not but we trust that it will be fully checked out.”

AlthoA North Yorkshire Police spokeswoman said: "Although this latest sighting of Claudia is yet to be verified, it shows that Claudia is still in the forefront of people’s minds."

She urged anyone with information about Claudia to always notify police by phoning 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.