The search operation launched on Monday, the tenth to find the child’s body carried out in the Ardennes since June 2020, “unfortunately did not make it possible to find Estelle”, said the lawyer in the evening.

The excavations, carried out in a wood of Issancourt-et-Rumel, are over, he said. “What the family wants” now is “a quick trial,” he added.

“We know how the couple Michel Fourniret-Monique Olivier kidnapped and killed her and today it is time to go to trial” he insisted.

The only question after the death of Michel Fourniret on May 10, 2021 at the age of 79, his ex-wife, Monique Olivier, must still be heard on Wednesday, he said.

Extracted from her Fleury-Mérogis prison, she has been questioned and guided to the scene since Monday by investigators but “still keeps secrets”, he said.

The wood of Issancourt-et-Rumel, a village of 400 inhabitants, had already been explored on the basis of indications that it had delivered, in particular in September and November 2021.

Sentenced to irreducible life for the murders of seven young women or adolescent girls between 1987 and 2001, Michel Fourniret had ended up confessing in March 2020 to judge Sabine Kheris his responsibility in the case.

Estelle Mouzin had disappeared at the age of nine in Guermantes (Seine-et-Marne), on her return from school on January 9, 2003.

Succeeding in this case to seven other magistrates, Judge Kheris – now at the head of the new national pole dedicated to “cold cases” within the court of Nanterre – had also succeeded in making Monique Olivier confess that she had accompanied her ex-husband on January 11, 2003 in Issancourt-et-Rumel to bury the body.

The site is located near Ville-sur-Lume, where, still according to Monique Olivier, Fourniret kidnapped, raped and killed Estelle in a house belonging to her sister. The child’s partial DNA was found on a mattress seized in 2003 from this house.

Fighting for years to find his trace, his father, Éric Mouzin, “armored himself” and now fights for missing children, said Me Seban.

For these last excavations, the investigators had mobilized new technical means, combining drones, soil mapping and analysis of their electrical conductivity.