Body buried deep and burnt “almost certainly” that of missing Brit
A body – almost certainly that of missing Brit Joel Eldridge – has been discovered buried three metres deep in a forest in Pedrógão Grande, wrapped in a blanket and burnt.
PJ police, working in conjunction with counterparts in UK, held a press conference in Coimbra yesterday (Tuesday) saying forensic pathologists will now have to confirm identity and establish cause of death – but everything points to the grisly scenario outlined last March (click here).
It now appears this is a case of ‘a falling out’ among members of a gang producing synthetic drugs, including MDMA (more commonly known as ecstasy).
Another Brit was arrested in London in December and it appears to be on his information that police were acting on Monday when they requested permission to take heavy machinery into the area and start looking for remains with georadar.
Said tabloid Correio da Manhã: “Everything indicates that the reason for the homicide was business with narcotic drugs”.
In a house “not far from the place where the remains were found, in a forest area between Picha and Louriceira – biological remains were identified”, the paper adds, suggesting these will have been “traces of Joel Eldridge’s blood”.
“PJ police realised that there had been a murder in that place”, said CM – later describing the house as revealing a ‘minilaboratory” where thousands of doses of synthetic drugs will have been produced.
When Joel’s family first started appealing over social media for news of the missing 30-year-old, the story was that he had come out to Portugal to help friends build a house (click here).
The young man from Bexhill, Surrey is understood to have subsequently told family members that he was ‘fed up’ and wanted to come home. Tragically that seems to have been the last time anyone heard from him.