Former army soldier Jürgen Conings, whose disappearance in mid-May resulted in a month-long manhunt, may have been alive for longer than has been previously reported.
In August, it was announced that, based on the small number of steps Conings took according to his mobile phone’s pedometer, he committed suicide shortly after his disappearance, however, a maggot study has now shown that he may have lived until 9 June, according to reports from VRT News.
Maggots or flies are often used during post-mortem investigations as their presence and development around a dead body can give researchers a sense of when a person died.
A maggot investigation was already done shortly after Conings was found at the end of June in the Hoge Kempen National Park, where a large chunk of the country-wide search took place.
- Jürgen Conings: Russia was behind disinformation
- Conings affair: one soldier suspended, several under review
However, the Federal Public Prosecutor's Office said at the time this examination was not easy, as he was found during a time of varied weather conditions, which may have affected the results of the study and made them inaccurate.
The results of this study have now been produced, and indicate that the timeframe of Conings death should be expanded to between 18 May - the date of death that was originally reported - and 9 June.
As a result, the public prosecutor has now asked experts to re-examine the maggots and their findings to narrow this down to a more precise time frame.
Although investigators are still convinced he died right after he went missing, the additional investigation will be carried out to "suppress all conspiracy theories" regarding Conings' activities. If the date of death is different, the investigation cannot yet be concluded.