Body of missing expat boy, 16, is discovered weeks after he vanished while canoeing in Spain’s Mar Menor lagoon

THE body of 16-year old Ivailo ‘Ivo’ Petrov has been found by the Guardia Civil, 20 days after he disappeared whilst canoeing in Mar Menor.

The Bulgarian boy’s body was discovered by authorities at a depth of five metres and at a distance of between 1,000 and 1,500 metres from the port of Los Alcazares, over 70km from Alicante.

Emergency services were initially alerted to the boy’s disappearance at 2.34 am on January 5 after a passer-by heard cries of help from the waters of the lagoon.

A member of the Guardia Civil, a local police officer from Los Alcazares, and a skipper from the municipality’s yacht club quickly set off aboard an improvised rescue boat.

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Ivo Petrov’s lifeless body was discovered by rescuers after a 20-day search. Credit: Cordon Press

Francisco Javier Medina, 22, and Jose David, 17, were both rescued – however, they told authorities that a 16-year old boy who did not know how to swim had been with them when the stolen boat capsized.

Work has now begun to extract Ivi’s body from the water following a long search. 

According to the search team, the body was found in the surroundings of the San Antonio spa, an area that had already been searched by rescuers in recent weeks.

The mayor of Los Alcazares, Mario Cervera, expressed his condolences on behalf of the municipality of Marmenorense for the boy’s tragic death. 


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