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People taking part in a vigil outside the Brazilian Embassy in London for Dom Phillips and Bruno Araujo Pereira last week. PA

Conflicting reports on developments in search for British journalist and Brazilian expert

Brazilian Federal Police said the latest development was the discovery of personal items belonging to Dom Phillips and Bruno Pereira.

LAST UPDATE | 13 Jun 2022

REPORTS ARE CONFLICTED over whether the bodies of missing British journalist Dom Phillips and Brazilian indigenous expert Bruno Pereira have been found.

A Guardian report citing Dom Phillips’ brother-in-law, Paul Sherwood, states that his family were told two bodies had been discovered tied to trees in the rainforest, but this has not been backed up by the Brazilian Federal Police.

Mr Phillips, 57, and Mr Pereira, 41, vanished from a remote part of the Amazon last week and are believed to have last been seen early on Sunday 5 June in the Sao Rafael community.

According to the Guardian, Paul Sherwood said his family received a call from an aide to Brazil’s ambassador for the UK early on Monday.

He told the Guardian: “He said he wanted us to know that… they had found two bodies.

“He didn’t describe the location and just said it was in the rainforest and he said they were tied to a tree and they hadn’t been identified yet.

“He said that when it was light, or when it was possible, they would do an identification.”

But Brazilian Federal Police said at 4pm on Monday that the latest development in the search for the two men was the discovery of their personal items.

In a statement, they said the objects included a backpack and a pair of boots belonging to Mr Phillips, as well as a health card, black trousers, a black sandal and a pair of boots belonging to Mr Pereira.

On Saturday, separate reports emerged that police had discovered human matter in the Itaquai River, near Atalaia do Norte’s port.

Authorities previously said blood found on a suspect’s boat had been sent for analysis.

Amarildo da Costa de Oliveira, 41, also known as Pelado, was earlier named as a suspect and arrested for allegedly carrying a firearm without a permit, a common practice in the region.

Police did not clarify why he was being treated as a suspect but he is thought to have been among a group of men who threatened the missing men near an indigenous territory on Saturday June 4.

A GoFundMe set up by friends of the men passed its 20,000 dollar goal early on Monday.