They also said the body – believed to be that of the missing six-year-old Olivia Gimeno – was found in a sports bag over 3,000 feet underwater and weighed down by an anchor, next to another empty gym bag.
The shocking revelation is sure to spark fears that the body of Olivia’s missing little sister, Anna, will never be found if it was in the bag.
Beatriz Zimmerman, the distraught mother of missing Olivia, six and one year old Anna, has been informed.
Tomas Antonio Gimeno, 37, disappeared with the girls on April 27 after failing to take them home to their home in Santa Cruz, the capital of Tenerife, in a drama that was followed around the world.
A spokesperson for the investigating judge said: “Pending more conclusive forensic tests, the body could almost certainly match that of Olivia G, the youngster who disappeared on April 27 with her sister from a an and their father.
“The body was found by a robot from the research vessel Angeles Alvarino at noon today about 1,000 meters underwater about three miles off the coast of Tenerife.
“It was inside a sports bag attached to an anchor. Next to it was another empty gym bag.
“The body was taken to dry land for an autopsy. The ship called Angeles Alvarino continues its research.
Tonight, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez reacted to the tragic news by tweeting: “I cannot begin to imagine the pain of the mother of little Anna and Olivia, who disappeared in Tenerife, following the terrible news that we have just come from. ‘learn.
“I send a hug and my love and that of all my family, which today is in solidarity with Beatriz and those close to him. ”
Jose Manuel Bermudez, mayor of Santa Cruz, the capital of Tenerife, has announced that a minute’s silence for Anna and Olivia will take place tomorrow at noon.
He said: “There are no words to express the terrible desolation I feel.
“Out of respect for the mother’s pain and with all the caution that the terrible news that reaches us deserves, I want to express to the family all the solidarity of the citizens of Santa Cruz. “
Canary Islands President Angel Victor Torres tweeted: “Weeks hoping to receive hopeful news and today we receive the worst possible, the one that freezes our soul, about little girls from Tenerife, Anna and Olivia.
“Our condolences, encouragement and strength for their mother Beatriz, her family and her friends. The devastated Canary Islands.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s partner Georgina Rodriguez was among those who shared a video of Olivia and Anna posted by their mother as part of a massive social media campaign urging the public to help them find them.
Beatriz said after the scuba tank was discovered on Monday, she believed it was part of her ex-partner’s attempt to disguise her theft with the girls.
South America was highlighted shortly after Gimeno’s disappearance with the young people as a place he could have taken them.
Georgina Rodriguez said in a moving message to her 24 million Instagram followers shortly after the mysterious disappearance: “I want to use my reach on this great social network to make sure it reaches as many people as possible.
“These are two sisters who are wanted in Spain and abroad. They are called Olivia and Anna and are six and one year old.
“Their mom is looking for as much publicity as possible for this video to try to find them as soon as possible and bring them home.
“I hope with all my heart that the girls are found safe and sound and that they can kiss their mother again soon. “
Local authorities said early on that all theories were being explored, including the possibility that the girls were dead, although relatives said they were clinging to the hope that they were still alive and that a meeting with their mother could still take place.
Gimeno took the girls without their consent and left Tenerife on a boat which was later found empty off Puertito de Guimar, which is in the eastern corner of the island just over 10 miles south of Santa Cruz.
Police were using a boat loaned by the Spanish Institute of Oceanography to search for clues where Gimeno’s mobile signal was last detected.
Gimeno had never accepted Beatriz’s relationship with a new Belgian partner after their separation.
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A spokesperson for the Civil Guard said: “This afternoon the boat belonging to the Spanish Oceanographic Institute, Angeles Alabrino, which was in Tenerife raking the seabed after Tomas disappeared on April 27. Gimeno with his daughters Anna and Olivia found human remains. .
“These remains correspond to the body of a minor and were discovered in the search area that had been determined by investigators.
“The remains have been taken to the Santa Cruz Institute of Forensic Medicine where they will be analyzed for identification. “