Gareth Huntley: Body found in Malaysia in search for missing backpacker

The thirty-four-year-old has not been seen since last Tuesday

Police involved in the search for missing British backpacker Gareth Huntley in the Malaysian jungle have found a body, the Foreign Office has said.

The body, which has not been confirmed as the missing Briton, was found today near a pond a few yards from a kayak storage unit near the Juara Turtle Project where Mr Huntley had been working, according to local reports.

The 34-year-old has not been seen since he started on a popular trek to visit a waterfall in Tioman Island, off the south-eastern coast of the country's mainland, on Tuesday 27 May.

Mr Huntely, who was on a sabbatical from his job in the City, had told friends at the headquarters where he was volunteering that he would return at 2pm the same day he set off but failed to come back.

Family and friends have feared that Mr Huntley may now be running low on water supplies after getting lost or injured while walking to or from the Lubuk Teja waterfalls.

A Foreign Office spokesman said: “Malaysian police have confirmed that a body has been found on Tioman Island in Malaysia.

”Foreign Office consular staff on the ground are continuing to work closely with the Malaysian authorities and are investigating with them as a matter of urgency.

“We continue to provide support to the family of Gareth Huntley at this very difficult time.”

His mother, Janet Southwell, flew to Malaysia to assist the search on Monday, after telling the BBC she wanted to be there “when they find him”. Last week she appealed to the Prime Minister David Cameron to assist in the search by "making one phone call" to Malaysian authorities.

At that point, she said she had not been given any official advice on the progress of the search. A Facebook page set up to find Mr Huntley urged the Malaysian police to "work faster" on Friday.

In her letter, she told Mr Cameron: “As a father, you know that we’d do anything for our children and so I’m humbly asking that you make one phone call to help my missing son, Gareth.

“Please do the right thing and make one phone call to the Malaysian leader to insist that they deploy real help to find Gareth before time runs out. He is out there in the jungle and he needs help.

“We need boots on the ground, search teams and dogs so that we can bring our son back alive.”

Additional reporting by Press Association

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Duty Manager

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Duty Manager is required to join one of the ...

Recruitment Genius: Team Leader

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Team Leader is required to join one of the l...

Recruitment Genius: Chef

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Chef is required to join one of the largest ...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Assistant

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Customer Service Assistant is required to jo...

Day In a Page

No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor