POLICE are monitoring ports across the UK as they hunt for a Polish man tattooed with the words “Hardcore Forever” who is being sought in connection with the murder of his friend in Leith.
Detectives made a personal appeal to 25-year-old Grzegorz Gamla to hand himself in to police in the wake of the murder of Maciej Ciania.
The inquiry team said there was a “strong possibility” that Mr Gamla was no longer in the Edinburgh area, and may have travelled to meet up with associates elsewhere in the country.
Officers believe he may have left the UK altogether, although checks have shown his passport has not been used since the murder on Saturday, January 14.
Detective Superintendent Gary Flannigan said: “We have no record that he has left the country. We won’t speculate how he left the country if he did.”
Officers are liaising with the UK Border Agency to help identify Mr Gamla if he tries to leave via airports or ports.
The body of Mr Ciania, 34, was found in his flat in Dickson Street after he had suffered a “violent and brutal” death.
Mr Gamla, who was last seen in Edinburgh on January 18, had been living in the Capital for a number of years and speaks fluent English. Investigators have advised anyone who sees Mr Gamla not to approach him but to contact police.
Officers would not disclose whether Mr Gamla, who was from the Lublin area in Poland, had been living at the Dickson Street main-door flat that the victim shared with a Lithuanian man who discovered his body.
Mr Gamla is described as white, 6ft 1in, thin, brown eyes, with short dark, close-cropped hair. He has a distinctive tattoo on his left forearm of a spider and the words “Hardcore Forever” in English, and was last seen wearing dark clothing including a dark-coloured Beanie-style hat.
Det Supt Flannigan added: “There is a strong possibility that he is no longer in the Edinburgh area and he may have travelled to other cities in the UK where he may have associates, or that he may leave the country.
“A team of 40-plus officers has been working on this inquiry but so far we have been unable to trace Mr Gamla.
“We have had a lot of support from the Polish community, both locally in the Leith area of the city and from the wider community.”
Posters featuring Mr Gamla have been put up in the windows of Polish businesses in the Leith area.
Det Supt Flannigan said: “I would particularly like to appeal to Grzegorz, if you see this appeal get in touch with the police immediately.
“We would also like to speak to any friends of Grzegorz and know where he is. The last sighting we have of Grzegorz was on Wednesday, January 18.
“If you know where Grzegorz is, if you recognise the photo, please contact police.
“We ask you not to approach this individual, but to contact police.”