FORENSIC searches have continued at houses in York and Tyneside as police continue to investigate the suspected murder of York chef Claudia Lawrence.

Teams of experts visited suspect Michael Snelling’s house in Burnholme Grove, York, yesterday as searches entered a third day.

Mr Snelling was arrested on Tuesday, five years after his University of York colleague Claudia vanished.

A number of items were removed from the house yesterday, including a large bulky object which had been wrapped up by officers, and several bags of lighter items, including papers and bottles.

The teams also covered sections of the garage at the property with plastic sheeting, and returned to the house at various points throughout the day.

Officers also carried out forensic tests at Mr Snelling’s mother’s house in North Shields, where he was arrested.

He was released on conditional bail on Wednesday evening.

Mr Snelling’s arrest on suspicion of murder was the first arrest directly in connection with Claudia’s disappearance, and police and sniffer dog units have also been searching the house in North Shields where he was arrested.

On Wednesday, North Yorkshire Police issued a statement to urge media to ensure their reporting was “balanced, proportionate, fair and factual”, and did not hamper their investigation.

Their statement was echoed by Martin Dales – Peter Lawrence’s friend and spokesman – who told The Press earlier this week: “We have worked with the media throughout all this and it would be a huge error if something happened now that might jeopardise a trial, anyone else being arrested or anything else.

“My plan today, as yesterday, is to take all that activity and publicity and if any information that has come to your mind now this is the time police need that information to help the case along. That information is vital.”

Searches of both properties are expected to continue.