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American student who vanished in Siberia 8 days ago is found dead

04 April 2016

Contradictory reports on cause of death as Colin Madsen's remains found in snow in mountainous region of Republic of Buryatia.

Rescuers found the body of a missing 25-year-old student of one of the universities of the city of Irkutsk. Picture: Arigus TV

The body of the 25 year old US citizen was found dead two kilometres from Arshan village where he was staying when he disappeared. Initial local TV reports suggest he had numerous injuries which might indicate murder, but later it was suggested he may have frozen to death. 

'As a result of search activities in the village of Arshan in Buryatia, Tunkinsky district, on the slopes of the mountain range Eastern Sayan, rescuers found the body of a missing 25-year-old student of one of the universities of the city of Irkutsk,' said an official statement from police. The cause of death was 'being investigated'.

Colin Madsen


Colin and Dana Madsen

Earlier Madsen's mother, Dana, had promised to pay 100,000 roubles for any useful information about her son's whereabouts. Picture: Arigus TV, Dana Madsen-Calcutt

The head of Buryatia's search and rescue service Pavel Shubin said: 'He was found by rescuers. Now police is working at the spot. Then the body will be brought down to the village.'

Madsen, from Jefferson City, Missouri, had been studying at a linguistics university in Irkutsk. He was on a vacation with Russian friends - and an American - when he died, it is understood. 

Madsen evidently left his guest house two hours before the group were due to climb local 2,412-metre high Peak of Love (7,913 feet), a mysterious mountain in the Eastern Sayan range in Buryatia, a Buddhist region in southern Siberia, close to Lake Baikal. 

Guest house


Volunteers


Blood traces check inside the guest house

Madsen evidently left his guest house two hours before the group were due to climb local Peak of Love. Pictures: Vlad Rasputin

He had gone out without a coat, wearing a T-shirt in sub zero night temperatures. His documents and money was untouched on his body. 

Among the group with Madsen, were students who had taken drugs the night he vanished, said Arigus TV. Tests will be conducted for alcohol, narcotic or other toxic and poisonous substances. 

Arshan map


Mountains near Arshan

The body of the 25 year old US citizen was found dead two kilometres from Arshan village where he was staying when he disappeared. Pictures: The Siberian Times, @baikal_meridian

Earlier Madsen's mother, Dana, had promised to pay 100,000 roubles for any useful information about her son's whereabouts. Police had earlier quizzed his friends using a polygraph. 

The Russian Investigative Committee last week opened a murder probe into Madsen's disappearance

Comments (16)

So tragic... so upsetting. Deepest and most sincere condolences to Colin's family
Svetlana, Russia
04/04/2016 16:27
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12

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