Body found in search for missing backpacker Catherine Shaw
The death is being investigated as a possible murder
Catherine Shaw, a British backpacker from Witney in Oxfordshire, was reported missing after she left Hotel Mayachik near Lake Atitlan on 5 March.
Guatemalan police said search teams have located a body at San Juan La Laguna.
Formal identification has not taken place but Ms Shaw’s family have been informed.
In a statement The Lucie Blackman Trust, which has been helping Ms Shaw’s family, said it was “saddened to announce that a body has been found in the search for Catherine Shaw”.
It added: “Formal identification has not taken place but the body is believed to be Catherine.”
The body was discovered shortly after a jacket believed to be Ms Shaw’s was found nearby.
According to The Telegraph, she was last seen leaving the Eco Hotel in Mayachik, shortly before 5.30am on Tuesday, carrying a stray puppy.
The puppy was found shivering and alone at the highest lookout of Indian Nose, a volcano overlooking Lake Atitlan, San Pedro and San Juan between 5am and 6am on Friday morning. The lake was searched by specialist divers.
Officials are now investigating whether there was any third party involvement in Catherine’s death.
A fundraiser was set up to help find Catherine, with nearly $12,000 raised in three days to fund her safe return.
Her friend, Jess Elizabeth, told The Tab: “She’s a beautiful soul, loves nature, outdoors, looking after the planet, interested in permaculture, yoga, travelling. Light up and inspires and gives wisdom to everyone she meets. She’s only 23 but an old soul for sure.”
Catherine has been travelling since September last year, previously visiting Mexico and California.
The Foreign Office confirmed that it is supporting the family.
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