12/09/2018 10:59 BST

Lynette Dawson: Australian Police Reopen Cold Case After The Teacher’s Pet Podcast Sparks Fresh Interest

"It's all about getting justice for Lyn."

NSW Police
Lynette Dawson disappeared in 1982 

Australian police have started digging at the former home of a mother-of-two who vanished in 1982.

No sign of Lynette Dawson has ever been found after she disappeared from the home she shared with her husband and two young children in Sydney.

On Wednesday, New South Wales police said the force had begun a five-day dig at the property, using new technologies.

Global interest in Dawson’s disappearance has been revived thanks to the popular podcast by The Australian newspaper, The Teacher’s Pet, which has been downloaded more than 18 million times.

In comments reported by the newspaper, homicide squad commander Detective Superintendent Scott Cook said: “We will go until we hit rock. Previously when we conducted examinations here, there was a number of anomalies in the ground. They were inspected previously. We’ll revisit them. It’s all about getting justice for Lyn.”  

Dawson is believed to have gone missing on 9 January 1982, though her husband Chris did not officially report her missing until 18 February.

The former rugby league player has long been a suspect, though has consistently denied any involvement in his wife’s disappearance, claiming she left the family voluntarily, possibly to join a religious cult. Two coroner’s inquests found she had been killed by a “known person.”

In 2003 an inquest heard PE teacher Mr Dawson had had sexual relationships with teenage students and moved a 16-year-old schoolgirl into his home within days of his wife’s disappearance. The pair married and had a child but have since separated. According to the Gold Coast Bulletin, Mr Dawson now lives in Noosa with his third wife.  

Supt Cook said the force would continue investigating regardless of the outcome of the search.

In 2013 the NSW Government announced a $200,000 reward would be offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the disappearance and presumed murder of Dawson.

A reinvestigation of the case in 2015 saw a summary of recently-uncovered evidence being handed to the state’s Director of Prosecutions. It had previously been determined there was not enough evidence to pursue charges.