The wreck of an airplane who was wearing the Argentinean football star Emiliano Sala was located on the seabed of the Channel and a body was visible inside, said investigators.
Sala and pilot David Ibbotson, 59, were aboard the Piper Malibu who disappeared from the radar on January 21st as he flew from Nantes, France, to Cardiff, Wales.
The 28-year-old played for Nantes in the French Ligue 1 and had just been signed by the Cardiff Premier League team.
The British Air Accident Investigation Branch said on Monday that in a video footage of a remotely operated submarine, "An occupant is visible in the middle of the wreckage.
"The AAIB is now considering the next steps, in consultation with the pilot's and passengers' families, as well as the police," he said.
"After identifying a priority research area last week, the AAIB agreed on a research strategy with Blue Water Recoveries Ltd. [the private company working with the family] to maximize the chances of locating the wreckage of the plane, "said the agency.
"The Geo Ocean III specialized vessel commissioned by the AAIB and the Blue Water Recoveries Ltd." commissioned the FPV Morven and the search area was divided between the ships. Both ships began their search on Sunday, February 3 in the morning. "
The AAIB stated that the Morven had identified an object of interest on the seabed by means of its side scan sonar, according to the Guardian of the United Kingdom.
"This allowed the Geo Ocean III to use its submarine remotely operated remote-controlled vehicle (ROV) to monitor the area of the seabed in which the object was located. Based on an analysis of the ROV video, the AAIB investigators aboard the ship concluded that the object was the wreckage of the missing Piper Malibu aircraft , registered N264DB.
"The ROV conducted a new search of the area during the night, but did not identify any additional wreckage."
David Mearns, skipper of the research boat hired by the Sala family, confirmed he found the debris in the English Channel north of Guernsey on Sunday morning.
"We located the wreckage of the aircraft on the seabed at a depth of about 63 meters [207 feet] very soon after we started looking, "said Mearns.
He said that Sala's parents were hoping "desperately" for the plane to be found.
The helpless father of Sala told local television channel Crónica: "He can not believe it. It's a dream, a bad dream. "
With postal wires