Just this Tuesday, the burnt body of British Catholic missionary Paul McAuley was discovered in the international youth hostel he founded in Peru. According to the local media, McAuley had been burned, thus resulting in his death. However, forensics state otherwise.
According to a forensic expert in Peru, the missionary’s body was already dead even before his body was burned. The expert found no traces of carbon dioxide in the victim’s blood, indicating that burning out was not the possible cause of his death.
The body was discovered by students last Tuesday in a hostel McAuley founded. However, state prosecutors didn’t mention anything about opening a murder inquiry or disclosing any information regarding McAuley’s possible killers.
Francisco Moreno, the head forensic doctor responsible for the discovery, claimed that it was hard to figure out the exact cause of death. As of now, they are conducting several tests both pathological and toxicological to further discover any hidden clues that could point to the victim’s cause of death and his possible killers.
However, Moreno added that such tests will take time, usually around three to six months to gather sufficient and accurate results. He also mentioned that around 80% of the victim’s body has been destroyed, making the analysis even more complex than initially thought.
McAuley was born in Portsmouth and served as a lay Catholic brother. Back in 2010, he has garnered the attention of the media when he was ordered to be expelled by the Peruvian government due to his work in helping Amazon tribes fight against the plans of oil and gas companies to invade the Amazonian rainforest.
The Episcopal Conference of Peru paid tribute to McAuley and urged the local authorities to further strengthen their efforts to investigate the crime and give McAuley the justice he deserves.