British swimmer’s severed hand and wedding ring ‘found inside shark’s stomach’
Nov. 06, 2019
A Scottish tourist is feared dead after his wedding ring and severed hand were ‘found inside a shark’ today.
The man, 44, has not been named but was reported missing on Saturday after going swimming alone.
He and his wife had been spending a week on the island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean.
The apparent victim had left for a dip in the Hermitage Lagoon, off Saint-Gilles.
An investigating source said: ‘When he did not get back, his wife sounded the alarm, and a full search was launched, involving boats and a helicopter.
‘Divers searched around a coral reef in the area, and there were also patrols on land involving sniffer dogs. Sadly, the man could not be found.’
Forensic scientists discovered the severed hand during an autopsy of a 10ft tiger shark killed because it was deemed a threat.
DNA tests are due to be carried out on the hand.
However, scientists from the CSR Shark Safety Centre have been told that the wedding ring on the it ‘conformed to one identified by the man’s wife,’ said the source.
There are frequent shark attacks around the French overseas territory, some 500 miles from Madagascar.
Swimming and other water activities are heavily restricted on Reunion due to the high risk of shark attacks.
In May, a 28-year-old surfer had his leg ripped off by a shark, and his dead body was later found floating in the port of Saint-Leu.
It marked the 24th shark attack and the 11th fatal one reported on Reunion since 2011.
This led to the local government urging caution in the sea, citing the risk of bull shark attacks.
During a visit to Reunion last month, French president Emmanuel Macron said his government was doing everything possible to deal with the shark crisis.
‘I know all about the trauma and tragedy that has taken place,’ he said.