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Family wants missing couple declared dead

Former banker Masee and wife not seen since 1994

Tags: Masee Case Investigation

VANCOUVER, British Columbia - Family of Dutch-born former banker Nick Masee and his wife Lisa who both disappeared without a trace on August 11, 1994, are petitioning the B.C. Supreme Court to declare the missing couple dead. Documents filed with the court suggest that Masee had become very guarded about his life in the months leading up to the disappearance while previously he always had been very open about it. He also had seemed concerned about his safety.

The couple vanished leaving the door to their modest North Vancouver house closed but unlocked with the alarm system turned off. They have not been seen since, nor have they accessed their bank accounts or used their credit cards.

Masee's two children Nick Jr., a moving company executive in Japan, and Tanya Masee Van Ravenzwaaij of the Netherlands are petitioning the court jointly with Lisa Masee's sister Loretta Leung so that when the court declares the couple presumed dead, their estate can be settled. According to a recent letter from the RCMP that was filed with the application, police investigated two theories - that the couple was abducted and met with foul play or that the two had orchestrated their own disappearance. According to the RCMP "there is no evidence to support either theory." The Masee file at the RCMP remain opens, however.

Masee, an account executive and manager at the exclusive Private Banking branch of the Bank of Montreal during the 1980s, served a term as president of the Netherlands Businessmen's and Professionals' Association and was involved in various other community activities. He also was master of ceremonies at several Sinterklaas Welkom events at the Westminster Quay. Masee changed careers about six months before his disappearance when he took a directorship with a junior company listed at the Vancouver Stock Exchange (VSE).

Since the couple's disappearance, a number of magazines have published articles about the case written by investigative journalists who cover the controversial VSE scene. None of the articles have revealed any information that could offer a reason for the disappearance, although it was noted that very few people associated with the VSE cared to comment on the case. Initially, some investigators suggested the Masees had been put under police protection and given new identities.