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© Reuters. Protestors react to the disappearance in Amazon of Dom Phillips, a journalist, and Bruno Araujo Pereira (in Copacabana beach, Rio de Janeiro), Brazil, June 12, 2022. REUTERS/Pilar Olivares

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Jake Spring

ATALAIA DON NORTE (Reuters, Brazil) – Brazilian search teams discovered clothing belonging to Bruno Pereira (NASDAQ:), an indigenous expert who was travelling with Dom Phillips, a British journalist, when they disappeared a week earlier.

Elizeu Mayaruna works with Funai and said that he discovered clothes, a tarp, and a bottle motor oil while searching for itacoai’s riverbank.

Mayaruna, along with two others from an indigenous search group, recognized Pereira’s shirt and pants. Pereira was a former Funai official.

Witnesses reported that Pereira was seen with Phillips (a freelance reporter who wrote for both the Guardian and Washington Post) as they traveled down that river on Sunday.

Two men went on a trip to report in remote jungle areas near Peru-Columbia border. This area is known for its large number of indigenous uncontacted people. It is a wild and dangerous area that has attracted illegal loggers as well as miners, hunters, and cocaine-smuggling bands.

The news of their disappearance was widely reported around the world, and Brazilian celebrities, from Pele, the soccer star, to Caetano, the singer, joined politicians, environmentalists, and activists to urge President Jair Bolsonaro for help in the hunt.

Witnesses from Reuters reported that Mayaruna found the riverbank where the clothes were. On Sunday, police cordoned the area after investigators scoured and found the clothing. Half a dozen boats transported firefighters and soldiers back and forth between the two sides.

A large, black Equinox-branded bag with clothing, books and a laptop was also found by divers on Sunday, according to O Estado de S.Paulo. It had been accompanied by a spokesperson from Amazonas State Firefighter.

Federal police and the state firefighters did not respond immediately to inquiries about clothing and a backpack found that was linked to the disappearing men.

Reuters was told that the probe is being conducted by the state police. The detectives were tasked with looking into poachers and illegal fishing in the area. This follows a history of clashes between Pereira, who organized patrols for the indigenous reservation.

One fisherman Amarildo Da Costa (known as Pelado) was arrested by police on weapons charges. He is being held in custody while they look into whether he has been involved in the disappearance of the other men.

Costa’s family and lawyers have stated that Costa fished legal on the river, and they denied any involvement in the disappearances of the men.

About 150 soldiers have been sent via riverboats to search for missing men, interview locals and join indigenous search teams which has been seeking the pair for over a week.

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