Body of TV presenter Michael Mosley to be repatriated by the weekend

<span>Michael Mosley went missing on the Greek island of Symi last Sunday, triggering a five-day search and rescue operation.</span><span>Photograph: Alamy</span>
Michael Mosley went missing on the Greek island of Symi last Sunday, triggering a five-day search and rescue operation.Photograph: Alamy

The body of Dr Michael Mosley is likely to be released to his family and repatriated by the weekend, forensic pathologists have said.

But tests revealing the precise cause of his death could take months because of a lack of certified laboratories to conduct advanced analysis.

“Usually it’s only a matter of time once a postmortem is conducted for a body to be released,” said Dr Grigoris Leon, who heads the Hellenic society of forensic medicine. “That means in this case it’s a question of days before repatriation takes place.”

However, Leon predicted it would take at least two months before the tests came back as Greece has only three laboratories to conduct such refined analysis of human organs and blood, urine and saliva.

Mosley, who influenced public health in the UK through his journalism, was found dead on the Aegean island of Symi last Sunday after a five-day search and rescue operation on land, sea and air.

The 67-year-old is thought to have died two-and-a-half hours after setting out on a walk that would turn fatal when, taking a wrong turn, he embarked on a treacherous hike through rocky terrain in blistering temperatures.

“He did an incredible climb, took the wrong route and collapsed where he couldn’t be easily seen by the extensive search team,” his widow, Dr Clare Bailey, said in a statement.

The couple, who were visiting friends on the island, had four children who also travelled to Symi to join the search for their father.

An initial inquest conducted by a coroner who inspected the body at the scene close to the beach bar resort of Agia Marina, followed by an autopsy at Rhodes general hospital, concluded that Mosley showed no injuries that would suggest criminal action.

CCTV clips handed over by the resort and now in possession of police, depict the clearly exhausted Mosley struggling to make his way down the slope before he dips out of sight.

“The view of the coroner at this time is that he got to a certain point and then collapsed,” police spokesperson Konstantina Dimoglou told Mega TV. “He seems to have felt unwell and sat down; he doesn’t appear to have fallen [from a height] down the slope.”