Body found in Tenerife identified as Jay Slater

Officials in Tenerife says fingerprints have confirmed the identity of the body found on Monday is the missing British teenager.

Jay Slater, 19, from Oswaldtwistle, Lancashire, is missing in Tenerife and last spoke to his friends on Monday. (Reach)
Jay Slater, 19, from Oswaldtwistle in Lancashire, went missing in Tenerife on 17 June. (Reach)

A body found in Tenerife has been confirmed as missing British teenager Jay Slater.

"We have a positive ID... Fingerprinting confirms that the body belongs to Jay Slater and the death was due to multiple traumas compatible with a fall in the mountainous area," a spokesperson at the Canary Islands High Court of Justice said on Tuesday.

Debbie Duncan, the mother of Jay Slater, said in statement that the confirmation of her son’s death in Tenerife was the “worst news”, adding: “I just can’t believe this could happen to my beautiful boy. Our hearts are broken.”

A mountain rescue team from the Spanish Civil Guard discovered a body on Monday near the village of Masca.

The remains were found with Slater's possessions and clothes close to the site of his mobile phone's last location, missing persons charity LBT Global said shortly afterwards.

Slater, 19, from Oswaldtwistle, Lancashire, went missing on 17 June in a remote national park on the Canary Islands archipelago.

Sunday 16 June: Slater attends the NRG music festival with friends at Papagayo nightclub in the tourist resort of Playa de las Americas in the south of the island.

Monday 17 June: In the early hours of Monday morning, Slater leaves the festival and goes to stay in a holiday apartment used by two British men he'd met over the course of the night.

The property has been named as Casa Abuela Tina, a holiday home annexed to a bar and restaurant on the edge of Masca. It is understood to have been rented by two British men who are believed to have checked out on Wednesday 19 June before flying back to the UK.

One of those men, Ayub Qassim, was questioned by Spanish police after Slater disappeared but was allowed to return to Britain with police telling him he had no relevance to the case.

The Airbnb was near the village of Masca, on the north-west of the island, around 19 miles from Playa de las Americas, which is near where Slater and his friends were staying.

Search for Jay Slater in Tenerife.(PA)
Search for Jay Slater in Tenerife.(PA)

At 7.30am, Slater posts a picture on Snapchat from the doorway of the property where he rested for a while and tagged himself as being in Rural de Teno park. Slater calls his friend, Lucy Law, at 8:30am, telling her he had attempted to walk back to his accommodation after missing his bus. The journey would have taken more than 10 hours on foot.

In the frantic last phone call, Slater said he had "cut his leg" on a cactus and had "no idea where he was". Law says her friend told her he was “lost in the mountains, he wasn’t aware of his surroundings, he desperately needed a drink and his phone was on 1%”.

Slater's phone runs out of battery shortly afterwards. This left his last known location as the Rural de Teno park. Slater was reported missing at 9.04am that morning.

Tuesday 18 June: Local police and mountain rescue teams scour Rural de Teno park for Slater, after his friends spent the previous day searching to no avail. The apprentice bricklayer's family fly out to Tenerife to join the search.

Wednesday 19 June: The search is temporarily moved to the Los Cristianos area in the south of the island because of a potential lead, but this is quickly discounted and the search returns north.

Slater’s mother, Debbie Duncan, says she feared her son had “been taken against his will”.

Read more: Conspiracy theorists ‘hindering’ Jay Slater search, says his mother (The Telegraph)

Relatives of missing British youth speak to police officers during the search in Masca ravine, on the island of Tenerife. Spain, June 19, 2024. REUTERS/Borja Suarez
Volunteers speak to police officers during the search for Jay Slater in Masca ravine on Tenerife. (Reuters)

Thursday 20 June: The search returns to Rural de Teno park, around the village of Masca. Emergency workers meet in various locations throughout the day, combing bushes, overgrown terrain, hillsides and rivers, but fail to find the missing teenager.

Friday 21 June: Spanish police reject an offer of support from Lancashire Constabulary as the hunt continues.

Police, firefighters and search and rescue personnel comb a vast area of land in and around the village of Masca. Rescuers carefully look through dead palm trees covering a river at the bottom of the hillside near to an Airbnb property Slater had reportedly been driven to.

The owner of the property tells reporters she saw Slater walk up the road past her property but did not see him again.

Saturday 22 June: Slater’s mother issues a direct plea to her missing son on the sixth day of the hunt, saying: “We just need you home.”

Firefighters appear to conduct the majority of the searches as they wear helmets to tackle dangerous hillside terrain in Tenerife. The search parties seem noticeably smaller compared with other days – with only a handful of emergency workers visible in Masca and surrounding areas.

Sunday 23 June: Search teams narrow their efforts on small buildings close to where Slater’s phone last pinged.

Officers from the Guardia Civil in the Canary Island can be seen circling two structures at the bottom of a ravine in Rural de Teno Park.

Efforts appear to be solely focused on the one area after days of searches in the village of Masca and the surrounding landscape.

Read more: TikTokker who shared theory about Jay Slater's whereabouts was right as body retrieved from location he predicted (Manchester Evening News)

Jay Slater, 19, had attended the NRG Tenerife Weekender music festival. (Reach)
Jay Slater, 19, had attended the NRG Tenerife Weekender music festival. (Reach)

Thursday 27 June: Slater’s mother says she will use donations from the GoFundMe appeal set up by Ms Law, to fund her stay on Tenerife.

Duncan says £36,000 raised by more than 3,200 individual donations will be used to support mountain rescue teams, and to cover her own accommodation and food costs during her extended stay on the island.

Friday 28 June: The Guardia Civil appeal for volunteer associations, such as firefighters, and individual volunteers who are experts in rugged terrain to assist in a “busqueda masiva”, or massive search, to take place on Saturday.

Saturday 29 June: A renewed search for Slater gets underway in Masca, co-ordinated to take in a steep rocky area, including ravines, trails and paths.

Sunday 30 June: Spanish police call off the search for the missing teenager. In a statement, a Guardia Civil spokesperson says: "The search operation has now finished, although the case remains open.”

However, Slater's family say that nothing has changed for them and that they will continue to look for him.

Read more: "Love you always brother...": Jay Slater's friend who he partied with in Tenerife pays tribute after body found in search (Manchester Evening News)

The property Slater is believe to have gone to has been named as Casa Abuela Tina - a holiday rental. (Booking.com)
The property Jay Slater was believed to have gone to has been named as Casa Abuela Tina - a holiday rental. (Booking.com)

Tuesday 2 July: Duncan says “words cannot describe the pain and agony we are experiencing” after searches fail to trace her missing son.

In a statement issued through British overseas missing persons charity LBT Global, she says the land search for her son has been called off, but thanks the Guardia Civil who she says “worked tirelessly up in the mountains where Jay’s last phone call was traced”.

Wednesday 3 July: In a statement on the GoFundMe appeal Get Jay Slater Home, which at this point has raised almost £50,000, Duncan thanks the “vast” generosity of donors, saying her family are “grateful for all of your support and kindness during this unimaginable time”.

She writes that part of the funds will be used to support volunteers hunting for Slater in the mountains of Tenerife.

Read more: Tenerife mapped: Where was Jay Slater last seen and where was the body found? (The Independent)

Casa Abuela Tina is annexed to a bar and restaurant on the edge of the village of Masca. (Booking.com)
Casa Abuela Tina is annexed to a bar and restaurant on the edge of the village of Masca. (Booking.com)

Sunday 14 July: The missing teenager’s mother speaks of her “heartache” and criticises “awful comments and conspiracy theories” as it approaches a month since her son's disappearance.

In a statement released through LBT Global, Duncan says: “As we approach four weeks of our beautiful Jay’s disappearance, we cannot put into words the heartache we are suffering as a family.”

She says the family wish to thank the public for “their continued support and well wishes” and praises the British Embassy and police for “doing all they can to support us”.

Slater's mother also announces that some of the £53,000 raised on GoFundMe was being used to fly in a search team from the Netherlands with drones and specialist dogs. As the team, named Signi Zoekhonden, prepared to board a flight on Sunday from Brussels Airport, volunteer Marieke Krans told the BBC: “We are very committed to come and we are confident in the dogs and in ourselves."

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Monday 15 July: A body is found in the search for Slater. LBT Global says that, while formal identification has not yet taken place, the remains were found with the 19-year-old’s clothes and possessions near his last known location near the village of Masca.

Having previously said the search was off, the force appear to contradict this claim in a new statement, which says: “After 29 constant days of searching the lifeless body of the young man has been found in the Masca area.

The force says Slater could have fallen in the steep and inaccessible area where the body was discovered.

Read more: Jay Slater's devastated family 'being supported' after body found in Tenerife - full statement (Manchester Evening News)

One major question that remains is why Slater decided to walk such a long distance back to his friend's holiday apartment.

Speaking to MailOnline, Williams-Thomas said he'd interviewed Qassim, 31, who claimed to have driven Slater to his Airbnb in Masca.

The TV sleuth, who conducted his own probe alongside the official police investigation, says Qassim offered to drive Slater back later in the morning after he'd had some sleep, but that the teenager said: "Nah, I need some scran, I'm hungry."

It was reported in June that Spanish police were investigating Slater's background, to establish whether it's relevant to his disappearance.

According to the Daily Mail, police are aware of a previous conviction from 2023 when Slater was given a community sentence for violent disorder, for his involvement in an attack on a then-17-year-old with a machete. Spanish police did not confirm to Yahoo News UK whether his disappearance was linked to this offence.

Guardia Civil officers use a dog to search for the young British man Jay Slater in the Masca ravine, on the island of Tenerife, Spain, June 25, 2024. REUTERS/Borja Suarez
Guardia Civil officers use a dog to search for the Slater in the Masca ravine on 25 June. (Reuters)

Ultimately, we don’t know what happened to Slater in the hours after his phone battery went flat, or the physical condition he was in.

Read more: "It seems like there's a lot of danger": The view from remote park where Jay Slater search has gone on for weeks (Manchester Evening News)

It is also not known what condition the teenager was in when he went missing. Slater's mother was quoted by MailOnline as saying: "He'd been at a three-day festival so he would have consumed a fair bit of alcohol but Jay was Snapchatting with friends before he went missing and seemed very compos mentis."