MX23RW : Sunday, February 17 02:35:52

Body recovered from plane carrying Emiliano Sala, David Ibbotson

Body recovered from plane carrying Sala
© Reuters
The Air Accidents Investigation Branch says that a body has been "successfully recovered" from the plane carrying Emiliano Sala and David Ibbotson.

The Air Accidents Investigation Branch has said that a body has been "successfully recovered" from the plane carrying Emiliano Sala and David Ibbotson.

The Cardiff City striker and the pilot were aboard a plane which disappeared over the English Channel on January 21, and it was revealed on Sunday - almost two weeks after they were declared missing - that the wreckage had been found on the seabed.

The AAIB also announced that a body had been seen in the plane, and that a recovery mission would be undertaken in order to remove it as soon as possible.

The procedure took place on Wednesday, and although an attempt to remove the plane proved to be unsuccessful, it has been announced that a body had been taken out of the aircraft.

A statement from the AIBB read: "Following extensive visual examination of the accident site using the remotely operated vehicle (ROV), it was decided to attempt recovery operations.

"In challenging conditions, the AAIB and its specialist contractors successfully recovered the body previously seen amidst the wreckage. The operation was carried out in as dignified a way as possible and the families were kept informed of progress.

"Unfortunately, attempts to recover the aircraft wreckage were unsuccessful before poor weather conditions forced us to return the ROV to the ship. The weather forecast is poor for the foreseeable future and so the difficult decision was taken to bring the overall operation to a close.

"The body is currently being taken to Portland to be passed into the care of the Dorset Coroner. Although it was not possible to recover the aircraft, the extensive video record captured by the ROV is expected to provide valuable evidence for our safety investigation.

"We expect our next update to be an interim report, which we intend to publish within one month of the accident occurring."

Sala had been travelling back to Cardiff with Ibbotson after saying goodbye to his former teammates at previous club Nantes.


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A tribute to Emiliano Sala is shown on screen before Arsenal's game with Cardiff City on January 29, 2019
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