The three Doncaster men arrested on suspicion of the murder of 56-year-old Thomas Groome have been released on police bail.
And it could be a long term before police solve the mystery of the Irishman’s disappearance more than three years ago.
He was last seen by his family in Thorne on New Year’s day 2010 when they thought he was heading to Portugal to start a new life.
The senior investigator, Detective Superintendent Lisa Ray, said: “We are working hard to establish the circumstances surrounding Thomas’s disappearance and are looking into whether Thomas made it out of the country in 2010. We are trying to trace his car and any sightings of it.
“This is likely to be a lengthy investigation as we have several geographical areas to search and liaison overseas with officials in Portugal and the Republic of Ireland.
“There is also additional in-depth forensic work to be carried out in various areas and we are still searching the properties of the men we arrested.
“I am appealing for anyone with information about Thomas’s movements or any sightings of him or his car after January 1, 2010 to please call 101, quoting incident number 107 of 13 March, 2013, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”
Thomas Christopher Groome, an Irish national, was last seen on New Year’s Day in 2010 after he spent Christmas 2009 with his family in Barnsley and celebrated New Year in Doncaster with family.
He was last seen driving a distinctive 2002, left-hand drive, black, sporty-looking VW Golf, which has been customised.
The three men who were arrested on Wednesday are a 36-year-old man from Wheatley and a 23-year-old and a 56-year-old both from Bentley, who have bene bailed until July.