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French police find body in search for missing Pierre Barnes

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2012-11-01

A body was found in the waters off the French island of Porquerolles on Thursday, which police believe to be that of the missing 12-year-old Pierre Barnes. The youngster disappeared on October 27 while he was out cycling in stormy weather.

A body, believed to be that of missing Franco-British boy Pierre Barnes, was found in the waters off the French island Porquerolles on Thursday.

The body was discovered by divers in the sea at the southern tip of the island at around 5pm and was later recovered from the water by firefighters.

The prosecutor in the nearby town of Toulon, Xavier Tarabeux, later confirmed to AFP that the body "corresponds"  to that 12-year-old Pierre Barnes in terms of "physical description" and "clothing".

The boy's father Stephen was informed about the find and asked by police to go and formally identifythe body.

"I believe it will be Pierre. I feel as though it will bring an element of closure and for that we should be grateful," Mr Barnes told the BBC.

An island-wide search for the boy had been called off on Tuesday afternoon, three days after he disappeared while riding his bike during a windstorm.

The youngster had just arrived on the small Mediterranean island with his English father, French mother and his two brothers and sisters when he took his bicycle out for a ride on Saturday.

The bike and a boy's shoe were later found by a creek.

Search dogs, police and at least 63 civil military personnel combed the island while divers searched the surrounding waters for any traces of the boy.

(FRANCE 24 with wires)

Date created : 2012-11-01


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