AN ESSEX man, who died 12 years ago, has been named as the killer of a nine-year-old boy who was raped and strangled 24 years ago.

Imraan Ismail Vohra vanished while walking home from school in July 1985.

His partially-clothed body was found two days later in Avenham Park, Preston, Lancashire.

More than two decades later, police have finally been able to name his killer, thanks to advances in DNA.

Police have named petty criminal Robert Morley, a Londoner who was living in Lancashire at the time of the attack, as the killer.

Morley later moved to Stansted, where he died in 1997, aged 62.

Detectives were able to confirm Morley as the murderer through the use of “familial DNA” – testing family members of a suspect.

Detective Chief Supt Graham Gardner, head of crime for Lancashire Police, said: “We’ve known since 2002 we had a part-profile of the killer, from evidence at the scene.

“In six years, we’ve tested 1,400 men against that sample. and now we have used further advances, such as familial DNA, which allows us to arrive at an offender through family members. Morley doesn’t stand on the national DNA database, because he died, but we were able to identify him through family members.”

Scientists say the chances of Morley being innocent are a billion to one.